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View Full Version : That girl who was strip searched by the school over 400mg of ibuprofen



Wounded Ronin
21st April 09, 07:27 PM
Well, I don't see a thread on this, but the news today has been mentioning how a girl who was like 12 or something was strip searched a number of years ago at her school and traumatized by it because some other girl said that she'd been the source of a prescription strength (iirc 400 mg) ibuprofen tablet. Today the question of whether schools have the right to do this is before the supreme court.

I actually am undecided on the issue. In terms of decency, ethics, and freedom, of course it is abominable that this has happened. But I guess that strictly speaking under US law kids actually don't really have any rights. Which I also think is pretty unethical. So on that level, I am opposed to letting schools strip search kids.

On the other hand, the problem with the public school system is that they can't expel people, and there are always busybody parents who never back up the school when it comes to disciplining the kid, and who constantly make trouble for the school by alleging racial incidents, making accusations against teachers, etc. By forcing kids who don't want to be there, who don't want to learn, and who are continually validated in their misbehavior by their trashy parents who have a chip on their shoulder against authority, the American public school system has become a joke. On an emotional level I wish that all trashy parents would be set on fire, on a practical level I feel that public schools should simply be able to expel kids who are a waste of time, and on a level as relates to the supreme court question, I am always a bit wary of dis-empowering the school further versus the parents, given what I talk about above.

Yes, I am aware that most principals seem to be power-tripping head cases. I agree this is a serious problem and also suggests the possibility of them abusing the power they hold over the kids. So my above position isn't flawless.


Your thoughts?

Equipoise
21st April 09, 08:00 PM
From a law perspective, I don't know what gave the school the rights to conduct a strip search. They are not agents of the law, nor do they have the authority to do such a thing. I think that is an egregious violation of the kid's rights. This is going to extend out on to the general staff who have no idea what they're doing or the laws involved in it. If anything, law enforcement should be present and then it should take that capacity via PC or a search warrant to conduct the search.

Also, it's a fucking Ibuprofen. Non-narcotic, non-addictive, the worst thing that could happen is having to pee a lot. This whole thing is BS.

If you really want to start a fire WR, make a thread regarding the Arizona v. Gant ruling today...

Ka-Bar
21st April 09, 08:16 PM
If you really want to start a fire WR, make a thread regarding the Arizona v. Gant ruling today...

How does your department handle things like this that have an immediate impact on how you'll perform your duties? Do you have a legal officer issue a department-wide memo or does the shift commander just pass it on during briefing.

Ka-Bar
21st April 09, 08:32 PM
The standard in New Jersey v. T.L.O. should be what's applied to these searches. School employees are acting as state agents when they conduct searches to find violations of school policy. Thus, they must comply with the same standards as law enforcement officers when conducting searches.

The school employees need reasonable suspicion to conduct a search. This is less cause that cops need to search you. I don't know if they did in this case, without reading the specifics. Once reasonable suspicion permits a search, the search's measures "are reasonably related to the objectives of the search and not excessively intrusive in light of the student's age and sex and the nature of the infraction."

Strip searching a 12 year old girl IS excessively intrusive, especially when the nature of the infraction is an over-the-counter pill. There better be some damn dire circumstances in place before you strip search any students, especially a 12 year old girl.

What's the prior history of this case?

Wounded Ronin
21st April 09, 11:09 PM
Strip searching a 12 year old girl IS excessively intrusive, especially when the nature of the infraction is an over-the-counter pill. There better be some damn dire circumstances in place before you strip search any students, especially a 12 year old girl.

What's the prior history of this case?

According to morning talk radio, she had a squeaky clean record.

The ibuprofen was technically prescription only because of the dosage, even though a two or three over the counter pills would have been the same amount of medicine.

Wounded Ronin
21st April 09, 11:10 PM
Also, it's a fucking Ibuprofen. Non-narcotic, non-addictive, the worst thing that could happen is having to pee a lot. This whole thing is BS.



Well, it might also irritate your stomach. I think that's the worst thing that would happen, as opposed to peeing a lot.



...OK, but seriously, if this is so clear cut, then why did it go all the way to the supreme court?

Wounded Ronin
21st April 09, 11:15 PM
OK, here is a news article with some details regarding the supreme court:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30295244/



TUCSON, Ariz. - The Supreme Court seemed worried Tuesday about tying the hands of school officials looking for drugs and weapons on campus as they wrestled with the appropriateness of a strip-search of a 13-year-old girl accused of having prescription-strength ibuprofen.

Savana Redding was 13 in 2003 when Safford, Ariz., Middle School officials, on a tip from another student, ordered her to remove her clothes and shake out her underwear looking for pills. The district bans prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

Her lawyer argued to the Supreme Court that such a "intrusive and traumatic" search would be unconstitutional in every circumstance if school administrators were not directly told the contraband was in her underwear.

"A school needs to have location-specific information" to put a child through such an embarrassing search, lawyer Adam B. Wolf said.

Would it be constitutional if officials were looking for weapons, or drugs like crack, meth or heroin? "Does that make a difference?" Justice Anthony Kennedy asked. No, Wolf replied.

That leaves school administrators with the choice of embarrassing a child through a search or possibly having other children die while in their care, Justice David Souter said. "With those stakes in mind, why isn't that reasonable?" Souter said.

Wolf said school officials violated the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches. School officials didn't bother to search her desk or locker, or even question additional students to find out if anyone thought Redding could be hiding drugs in her underwear, he said.

"There needs to be suspicion that the object is under the clothes," Wolf said.

A 1985 Supreme Court decision that dealt with searching a student's purse has found that school officials need only reasonable suspicions, not probable cause. But the court also warned against a search that is "excessively intrusive."

Reasonable grounds?
A schoolmate had accused Redding, then an eighth-grade student, of giving her pills.

Vice Principal Kerry Wilson took Redding to his office to search her backpack. When nothing was found, Redding was taken to a nurse's office where she says she was ordered to take off her shirt and pants. Redding said they then told her to move her bra to the side and to stretch her underwear waistband, exposing her breasts and pelvic area. No pills were found.

A federal magistrate dismissed the lawsuit Redding and her mother April brought, and a federal appeals panel agreed that the search didn't violate her rights. But last July, a full panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found the search was "an invasion of constitutional rights."

The court also said Wilson could be found personally liable.

The school's lawyer argued that the courts should not limit school officials' ability to search out what they think are dangerous items on school grounds. "We've got to be able to make decisions," lawyer Matthew Wright said.

But justices worried that allowing a strip search of school age children might lead to more intrusive searches, like body cavity searches. "There would be no legal basis in saying that was out of bounds," Souter said.

Redding, now a 19-year-old college freshman living in her hometown of Safford in rural eastern Arizona, took her first airplane ride to watch the arguments. "It was pretty overwhelming," she said, standing before a bank of cameras and a few dozen reporters outside the building.

She said she is considering becoming a counselor, which might mean she could end up working in a school. Asked how she would handle the situation as a counselor, she said she would call a student's parents first. "I didn't have that option," she said, outside the court. "I'm a little kid. I didn't have any idea how it would be handled. But my mom would."

There were flashes of humor during the serious arguments.

'That's what kids do'
Justice Antonin Scalia apparently discovered that children sometime sniff permanent markers looking for a high as he questioned why the school confiscated them. "They sniff them?" Scalia said.

"That's what kids do, your honor, unfortunately," Wright said.

"Really?" Scalia said.

And Justice Stephen Breyer can expect years of teasing after a misstatement as he was trying to point out that it might not be unusual for children to hide things from teachers in their underwear.

"In my experience when I was 8 or 10 or 12 years old, you know, we did take our clothes off once a day, we changed for gym, OK? And in my experience, too, people did sometimes stick things in my underwear." Breyer hesitated as he realized what he said as the courtrooom erupted in laughter.

He quickly recovered and added: "Or not my underwear. Whatever. Whatever."

The case is Safford Unified School District v. April Redding, 08-479.

Wounded Ronin
21st April 09, 11:20 PM
Incidentally, according to http://www.newsvine.com/_question/2009/04/21/2711892-was-the-arizona-school-strip-search-of-the-13-year-old-justified the email address of the principal who ordered the strip search is as follows: [email protected]

WarPhalange
21st April 09, 11:27 PM
Strip search over Ibuprofen = people involved never work in a supervisory role again.

Think about it. What kind of kid puts Ibuprofen in their underwear to keep it hidden from The Man? If it had been a rumor about crack or heroin or something, I'd understand, because if she's got hard drugs, she might be clever enough to hide them well or at least have been told to do so. But Ibuprofen?

If a kid has to hide Ibuprofen in his/her underwear, then that just shows the pathetic state that our school system has gotten to. "Zero Tolerance" my ass. If you treat a kid with Ibuprofen the same way you'd treat a kid with a fucking Safeway bag of coke, then you are just confusing the kid who had a tooth/head/whatever ache and wanted some relief. You're also confusing the kids who already have some on them and want to help their friend with a headache.

Any normal person would say "Advil. Over the counter. He says he's taken it before. I haven't heard anybody say it's dangerous or anything. I'll give him some." BAM! Looks like the people teaching you are fucking idiots because they scream bloody murder when you want to help your friend with his/her pain.

MrGalt
21st April 09, 11:39 PM
I wholeheartedly support Supreme Court Justices whose gift of gab enables them to use the time-honored rhetorical tactic of "whatever" to cover their gaffes.

Ronin, who told you public schools can't expel kids? I knew kids who got expelled in my school district. They either had to find another school that would take them farther away or in many cases were sent to the Alternative School, which appeared to be halfway between public school and juvie...or something. When I was a substitute teacher I always declined to work there so I haven't actually seen the place.

Ka-Bar
21st April 09, 11:51 PM
According to morning talk radio, she had a squeaky clean record.

The ibuprofen was technically prescription only because of the dosage, even though a two or three over the counter pills would have been the same amount of medicine.

I meant the prior history of litigation, like appeals and junk. But the article you posted answered that.

I find it hard to believe that a magistrate and the appeals court both found this search to be reasonable.

WarPhalange
22nd April 09, 12:18 AM
"So then I had to make sure she wasn't hiding any Ibuprofen inside of her vagina. With my penis. Repeatedly."

"Yes yes, that sounds reasonable."

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
22nd April 09, 12:21 AM
We let the whole office have a look to be sure.

WarPhalange
22nd April 09, 12:25 AM
Naturally, we filmed the whole ordeal. In order to let objective, third-party observers help us out, we posted the video on the internet.

HappyOldGuy
22nd April 09, 12:28 AM
This is fucking sick.

Now college girls OTOH. Hell, that should be probable cause right there.

Zendetta
22nd April 09, 12:39 AM
Knave!!!

Get your ass in here and tell us why this little bitch should have been body-cavity searched in front of the whole PTA.

Kein Haar
22nd April 09, 07:20 AM
Boi-i-i-i-i-i-i-ing

Aaranar
22nd April 09, 08:32 AM
I'm sorry, but if I arrived at school to be informed by a student that my child had been strip searched for the equivalent of two Advil, that principal would have finished the day in ICU.

There is a lot I find disturbing about this case. Why wasn't a parent ever called? Why was that girl the only child searched? They clearly could have justified searching the entire school and all the children given their low threshold of cause. At the very least, why wasn't her desk or locker searched before or after the strip search? They didn't even bother searching the girl they found with the pill. Something doesn't smell quite right about all that.

white_kimbo
22nd April 09, 09:17 AM
tinker v. des moins clearly stated that children to not check their rights at the door to a school building.

those that conducted the search should be beaten in the street. i don't see any significant difference between those assholes and any other child preditor.

rw4th
22nd April 09, 09:47 AM
It's pure fucking bullshit. Search her locker and bag, sure. Search her jacket and ask her to turn her pant pockets inside out, okay, but "take your clothes off" crosses a line. If they think there is probable cause for that then they can detain her and get the police and the parents involved.

Lohff
22nd April 09, 10:08 AM
The standard in New Jersey v. T.L.O. should be what's applied to these searches. School employees are acting as state agents when they conduct searches to find violations of school policy. Thus, they must comply with the same standards as law enforcement officers when conducting searches.

The school employees need reasonable suspicion to conduct a search. This is less cause that cops need to search you. I don't know if they did in this case, without reading the specifics. Once reasonable suspicion permits a search, the search's measures "are reasonably related to the objectives of the search and not excessively intrusive in light of the student's age and sex and the nature of the infraction."

Strip searching a 12 year old girl IS excessively intrusive, especially when the nature of the infraction is an over-the-counter pill. There better be some damn dire circumstances in place before you strip search any students, especially a 12 year old girl.

What's the prior history of this case?
TITCR response. The court struck down the in loco parentis bullshit a long time ago when the school is searching for contraband.

As far as procedural history is concerned, the ninth circuit overturned a lower courts decision that schhol district officials could not be held liable.

http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2008/07/11/0515759.pdf

There is the ninth's decision if you are interested.

Wounded Ronin
22nd April 09, 06:26 PM
Ronin, who told you public schools can't expel kids?

My mom, who is a teacher.

But you're the first person who has suggested that they can't expel. Not saying you're wrong or anything, but nobody has ever raised that thought before.

Harpy
22nd April 09, 11:29 PM
Do most of you think that at 12 years old you would know to make a huge scene (or demand to call your lawyer/parents) if an adult at school tried to get you to remove your clothes?

Wounded Ronin
22nd April 09, 11:42 PM
Do most of you think that at 12 years old you would know to make a huge scene (or demand to call your lawyer/parents) if an adult at school tried to get you to remove your clothes?

Depends on how trashy the family she came from was.

Harpy
22nd April 09, 11:44 PM
That makes my skin crawl.

WarPhalange
22nd April 09, 11:53 PM
Do most of you think that at 12 years old you would know to make a huge scene (or demand to call your lawyer/parents) if an adult at school tried to get you to remove your clothes?

Nope. At age 12 (up to age 18, really) I had thought that adults had their shit together, and listening to them was a good idea because they were all smarter than me and knew what life was about.

It's really depressing to see just how stupid grown men and women can be.

Kein Haar
23rd April 09, 01:29 AM
Fact:

There are fingers to be sniffed after such debacles.

Harpy
23rd April 09, 01:48 AM
I'm assuming that's what police dogs are for?

nihilist
23rd April 09, 02:52 AM
Is this the 12yr old naked cavity search finger sniffing but dogs do it better thread?

Aaranar
25th June 09, 08:42 PM
Supreme Court finds for the girl in a rare common sense decision.

Student Strip Search Illegal
School Violated Teen Girl's Rights, Supreme Court Rules

Arizona school officials violated the constitutional rights of a 13-year-old girl when they strip-searched her on the suspicion she might be hiding ibuprofen in her underwear, the Supreme Court ruled yesterday. The decision put school districts on notice that such searches are "categorically distinct" from other efforts to combat illegal drugs.

In a case that had drawn attention from educators, parents and civil libertarians across the country, the court ruled 8 to 1 that such an intrusive search without the threat of a clear danger to other students violated the Constitution's protections against unreasonable search or seizure.

Justice David H. Souter, writing perhaps his final opinion for the court, said that in the search of Savana Redding, now a 19-year-old college student, school officials overreacted to vague accusations that Redding was violating school policy by possessing the ibuprofen, equivalent to two tablets of Advil.

What was missing, Souter wrote, "was any indication of danger to the students from the power of the drugs or their quantity, and any reason to suppose that Savana was carrying pills in her underwear."

It was reasonable to search the girl's backpack and outer clothes, but Safford Middle School administrators made a "quantum leap" in taking the next step, the opinion said. "The meaning of such a search, and the degradation its subject may reasonably feel, place a search that intrusive in a category of its own demanding its own specific suspicions," Souter wrote.

Justice Clarence Thomas was the lone dissenter. "Judges are not qualified to second-guess the best manner for maintaining quiet and order in the school environment," Thomas wrote.

He said administrators were only being logical in searching the girl. "Redding would not have been the first person to conceal pills in her undergarments," he wrote. "Nor will she be the last after today's decision, which announces the safest place to secrete contraband in school."

The court's virtual unanimity was in contrast to the intense oral argument that seemed to exasperate the court's only female member, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She later said her male colleagues seemed not to appreciate the trauma such a search would have on a developing adolescent.

"They have never been a 13-year-old girl," she told USA Today when asked about her colleagues' comments during the arguments. "It's a very sensitive age for a girl. I didn't think that my colleagues, some of them, quite understood."

But yesterday's opinion recognized just that. "Changing for gym is getting ready for play," Souter wrote. "Exposing for a search is responding to an accusation reserved for suspected wrongdoers" and is so degrading that a number of states and school districts have banned strip searches. The Washington region's two largest school districts are among them.

Redding said the decision "feels fantastic." She described herself as shy and "not a good public speaker," but said the long legal battle "was to make sure it didn't happen to anyone else."

The case, Safford Unified School District #1 v. Redding, began when another student was found with prescription-strength ibuprofen and said she received it from Redding.

Safford Middle School assistant principal Kerry Wilson pulled the quiet honors student out of class, and she consented in his office to a search of her backpack and outer clothes. When that turned up no pills, he had a school nurse take Redding to her office, where she was told to remove her clothes, shake out her bra and pull her underwear away from her body, exposing her breasts and pelvic area.

No drugs were found, and Redding said she was so humiliated by the incident that she never returned to the school. Her mother filed suit against the school district, as well as Wilson.

After years of legal proceedings, the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit eventually ruled in her favor.

Justices based their view on the court's warning in a 1985 case that, although school officials have leeway in deciding when searches of students are reasonable, the officials may not employ searches "excessively intrusive in light of the age and sex of the student and the nature of the infraction."

Lower courts have had trouble deciding when that standard applies, Souter wrote, so Wilson should not be held personally liable for the incident. The court ruled, though, that Redding's suit could proceed against the school district.

Ginsburg and Justice John Paul Stevens criticized the decision to remove Wilson from the suit, saying he should have known the search violated Redding's rights.

"Abuse of authority of that order should not be shielded by official immunity," Ginsburg wrote.

Redding's attorney, Adam Wolf of the American Civil Liberties Union, said the court made clear that strip searches would be used only in "extraordinary circumstances" and that "the justices saw what the general public saw: that these school officials overreacted and traumatized a young girl."

Francisco M. Negrón Jr., general counsel for the National School Boards Association, said he was glad the court recognized that the school officials had acted "in good faith." But he said the decision did not provide clear guidelines about how specific the accusation must be, or how dangerous the alleged drugs, before school officials employ such an intrusive search.

"I think there will be more litigation," he said.

But many states and school boards are simply not allowing strip searches, including some in the Washington area.

The policy in Fairfax County, for instance, specifies that "personal searches may extend to pockets; and to the removal and search of outer garments such as jackets, coats, sweaters, or shoes; and to items such as pocketbooks or backpacks." In Montgomery County, officials with the Department of School Safety and Security said searches are limited to outer clothing and pockets. The "preferred method is self-search," where a student is told what to remove, said school system spokeswoman Kate Harrison. A third person is always present for any search, she said.

Source : http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/25/AR2009062501690.html

WarPhalange
25th June 09, 08:55 PM
Jesus Christ, wtf is this:


Francisco M. Negrón Jr., general counsel for the National School Boards Association, said he was glad the court recognized that the school officials had acted "in good faith." But he said the decision did not provide clear guidelines about how specific the accusation must be, or how dangerous the alleged drugs, before school officials employ such an intrusive search.

How fucking stupid do you have to be to think "Hmmm... Ibuprofen... it could be in her underwear... yeah, I say go for it!"

It's fuckign Ibuprofen. Even if she HAD had it, it's not exactly lethal. Nor can you get high off of it. So why would she be carrying it? Hawking it to people that have tooth aches?

Dagon Akujin
26th June 09, 01:37 AM
The school I was at once had a kid who "supposedly" had brought his mom's vikadin to sell for $20 a pop. The kid was stupid. He was simply told that we were going to have to expell him and he pulled the stuff out and admitted it was all a joke. Also, the pills were Tylanol or something.

He was suspended a few days, but the kid had been in trouble tons of times before.

Answer? Just suspend the kid anyway. Big deal.

MrGalt
26th June 09, 09:00 AM
My mom, who is a teacher.

But you're the first person who has suggested that they can't expel. Not saying you're wrong or anything, but nobody has ever raised that thought before.

Sorry to rejoin for the purpose of contributing nothing of real substance, but did you not say "On the other hand, the problem with the public school system is that they can't expel people..." in the OP? It almost looks like you're accusing me of putting the words in your mouth that you had just used on the same page that you used them.

Kein Haar
26th June 09, 09:16 AM
So hot.

bobyclumsyninja
26th June 09, 09:52 AM
WTF is wrong w/ Clarence Thomas? Does the man have no fucking sense?

Were that my child, there would be a headline in the following day's paper.

"school principal mysteriously found duct-taped to his car naked in the parking lot of local school"

Quikfeet509
26th June 09, 10:00 AM
Zero Tolerance basically means "we have no fucking ability to differentiate between real and imagined threats so we respond to each equally".


Fail.

HappyOldGuy
26th June 09, 10:22 AM
WTF is wrong w/ Clarence Thomas? Does the man have no fucking sense?


I often wonder whether Thomas got broken by his confirmation process. He was obviously always going to be a hyper conservative wingnut, but I wonder whether the whole scandal pushed him past the rim.

Ajamil
26th June 09, 10:43 AM
He said administrators were only being logical in searching the girl. "Redding would not have been the first person to conceal pills in her undergarments," he wrote. "Nor will she be the last after today's decision, which announces the safest place to secrete contraband in school."

The court's virtual unanimity was in contrast to the intense oral argument that seemed to exasperate the court's only female member, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She later said her male colleagues seemed not to appreciate the trauma such a search would have on a developing adolescent.

"They have never been a 13-year-old girl," she told USA Today when asked about her colleagues' comments during the arguments. "It's a very sensitive age for a girl. I didn't think that my colleagues, some of them, quite understood."

But yesterday's opinion recognized just that. "Changing for gym is getting ready for play," Souter wrote. "Exposing for a search is responding to an accusation reserved for suspected wrongdoers" and is so degrading that a number of states and school districts have banned strip searches. The Washington region's two largest school districts are among them.

Now this might simply be a case of fitting pronouns, but it stinks of double standard to me. Does anyone consider that this would be better if the student was male? Does it have to do with the school personnel being the opposite sex of the defendant? If a male in a room full of female teachers was asked to strip and pull his boxers away from his body, exposing his pelvis, would this be as much of a hype?

Perhaps there is something there that makes it "a girl thing" and the fellow judges "wouldn't understand." (From the sound of it, they already seemed very nonchalant about any student getting stripped.) Do people think that it's genetic or cultural that we might feel as if it's worse for an adolescent girl to be seen naked than an adolescent boy?

bobyclumsyninja
26th June 09, 05:24 PM
Culturally, women's bodies are scrutinized and held to unreasonable expectations and unreachable ideals, including very young women.

Let's not pretend it's the same. A boy's wet dream, may well involve a room full of female teachers, and a strip search.

HappyOldGuy
26th June 09, 05:31 PM
Culturally, women's bodies are scrutinized and held to unreasonable expectations and unreachable ideals, including very young women.

Let's not pretend it's the same. A boy's wet dream, may well involve a room full of female teachers, and a strip search.

Let's pretend it anyhow. Because whatever wet dreams he has, I can almost guarantee he's had nightmares about being in school in his underwear.

MrGalt
26th June 09, 06:37 PM
It's hard to even imagine a sane world where having one's body seen by others isn't automatically traumatic, but wouldn't it be nice?

If I'm tracking some people's position here correctly I'm going to agree that really something like being strip-searched does as much or as little harm as the victim "decides" it does, although a lot of that decision isn't conscious.
---------------------------------------------------------
Vaguely related:

"Of all the strange "crimes" that human beings have legislated out of nothing, "blasphemy" is the most amazing--with "obscenity" and "indecent exposure" fighting it out for second and third place. "
-Lazarus Long

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
26th June 09, 11:49 PM
being forced to take your clothes off in front of strangers is always going to be traumatic. i'm not bothered if family or friends catching me in my undies but if, say, SFGOON told me to take dem briches off (and dem panties too hyuk hyuk) I'd be just a little uncomfortable.

Wounded Ronin
26th June 09, 11:56 PM
Were there any updates in the news on this?