Jun 25, 2009

SC: No Stripsearching Innocent 13-year-old Girls

Damn right.

From David Stout in the Times on the U.S. Supreme court opinion in Safford Unified School District v. Redding (No. 08-479):

In a ruling of interest to educators, parents and students across the country, the Supreme Court ruled, 8 to 1, on Thursday that the strip search of a 13-year-old Arizona girl by school officials who were looking for prescription-strength drugs [acting on a tip] violated her constitutional rights.

Justice Clarence Thomas dissented, as expected, finding the strip search reasonable and lawful.

The Court found that the school district is liable as a whole but not individual school officials. Justices Ginsberg and Stevens dissented on this point of the ruling.

“At no point did he attempt to call her parent,” Justice Ginsburg wrote on Thursday. “Abuse of authority of that order should not be shielded by official immunity.” (NYT)

Actually what school officials deserve in this instance is a sharp hook to their collective jaw.

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