STATE v. CHAVEZ
123 Ariz. 538 (1979)
601 P.2d 301
STATE of Arizona, Appellee,
Cesar E. CHAVEZ and Helen F. Chavez, Appellants.
No. 1 CA-CR 3534.
Court of Appeals of Arizona, Division 1, Department C.
July 10, 1979.
Rehearing Denied September 13, 1979.
Review Denied October 10, 1979.
Robert K. Corbin, Atty. Gen., John A. LaSota, Jr., former Atty. Gen., by Lynn Hamilton, Asst. Atty. Gen., Phoenix, for appellee.
James Rutkowski, Salinas, Cal., for appellants.
The appellants, Cesar E. Chavez and Helen F. Chavez, have challenged the constitutionality of a preliminary injunction which prohibited picketing by the United Farm Workers Union against certain melon fields in Yuma County.
This challenge arises from appellants' trial and conviction for criminal contempt under A.R.S. § 13-341(4)1 for having deliberately violated a court order which prohibited all "massing, assembling, demonstrating or picketing" upon or near the properties of G and S Produce Company and Pete Pasquinelli Company. Appellants' contention at the hearing on the contempt charge and before this Court on appeal is that the injunction was unconstitutionally overbroad in violation of a protected First Amendment activity, peaceful picketing, since it failed to distinguish between violent and non-violent conduct. Therefore, they maintain, inasmuch as the injunction was void on its face, they had a legal right to disobey the unlawful order and could not be found guilty of criminal contempt.
The State, on the other hand, argues that appellants by failing to appeal the injunction or to seek its review by special action, are now estopped to launch a collateral attack on its validity by an appeal from their convictions on the contempt charges. We agree with this assertion by the State and therefore affirm.
The facts generally are not in dispute. Over the Memorial Day weekend, May 27 through 29, 1978, the United Farm Workers imported numerous strikers to the Yuma County cantaloupe fields and initiated a strike. On May 29, 1978, the Yuma County Superior Court issued a temporary restraining order limiting the number of strikers per acre and per laborer and prohibiting certain violent acts. On June 7, 1978, after a hearing in which appellants participated, the court issued a preliminary injunction which prohibited all picketing. On June 13, appellants violated that injunction by massing near a cantaloupe farm. Prior to the violation they had made no effort to seek relief via appeal or petition for special action.2 Their sole defense at the contempt trial was that a citizen need not obey an invalid court order and that the prohibition against even peaceful picketing constituted an unlawful restraint of their First Amendment rights.
As a basis for issuing injunctive relief to the growers, the trial court had determined that there was no evidence of employee dissatisfaction in the melon fields and no reason for the pickets. The court further found that: the picketers were making threats against the employees working in the fields and were not attempting to engage in any peaceful communication with them; there were repeated acts of aggression by the strikers in throwing rocks and impeding traffic; and the entire situation was "enmeshed in violence". Further, the court stated that the United Farm Workers Union was in violation of Arizona's Right to Work Laws.