Since 1998, the Utah Highway Patrol Association, a private organization, has paid for and erected more than a dozen 12-foot-high crosses to honor fallen state troopers. Ten of the memorial crosses are on public land. A group called American Atheists challenged this practice in a 2005 lawsuit, arguing that the crosses were an endorsement of Christianity by the Utah state government, and therefore unconstitutional. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants, holding that the memorial crosses did not violate the federal or state constitution. Plaintiffs appealed, however, and in December 2010 the 10th Circuit reversed the lower court, holding that the crosses did "have the impermissible effect of conveying to the reasonable observer the message that the State prefers or otherwise endorses a certain religion. They therefore violate the Establishment Clause of the federal constitution." The defendants asked the U.S. Supreme Court to rule on the issue, but on Oct. 31, 2011, the Supreme Court denied the petition and refused to hear the case. The Utah Highway Patrol Association has since tried to remedy the "unconstitutional memorial" problem, the Deseret News reports, by removing all UHP logos from the 14 crosses at issue and "tap[ing] on notes stating...

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