The Latest: Judge hears arguments in Anchorage transgender case

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Representatives of a faith-based Anchorage women's shelter asked a federal judge Friday to stop the city from applying its gender identity law requiring it to accept transgender women.

The conservative Christian law firm Alliance Defending Freedom is seeking a preliminary injunction as part of a lawsuit it filed against the city last year after a transgender woman complained she was denied entry at the Hope Center shelter.

Alliance attorney Ryan Tucker told U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason homeless shelters are exempt from the local law and that constitutional principles of religious freedom are at stake.

Ryan Stuart, an assistant municipal attorney, countered that the preliminary injunction sought by plaintiffs was premature because an investigation by the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission had not been concluded, largely because of the shelter's noncooperation. The investigation is on hold.

At the end of the proceeding, Gleason said she will take the matter under advisement.