A decision could be released Thursday in the case of a Richland flower shop that refused to make arrangements for a same-sex couple’s wedding.
The Administrative Office of the Courts has announced that the opinion on Arlene’s Flowers is one of five anticipated filings from the Washington state Supreme Court.
The case was argued Nov. 15 before the nine justices at Bellevue College.
Barronelle Stutzman, store owner, appealed the 2015 ruling of a Benton County Superior Court that she violated the state’s anti-discrimination law and the Consumer Protection Act.
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She was sued in 2013 by the state Attorney General’s Office and the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Washington, on behalf of Robert Ingersoll and Curt Freed.
Stutzman, a Southern Baptist, cited her relationship with Jesus Christ when she turned down the request of Ingersoll, a longtime customer.
Her attorney argued that arranging flowers is artistic expression protected under the First Amendment, and that the owner shouldn’t be forced to create custom floral designs for a wedding that’s not between a man and a woman.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson described it as “a very simple case” to the court. If a business provides a service, then it must be done equally, he said.