High Court to Weigh Jail Strip Searches on Minor Charges


The U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether a jail had the right to strip-search a man mistakenly held for seven days after a routine car stop six years ago in Burlington County, N.J., reports the Philadelphia Inquirer. The court agreed to hear the case of Albert Florence, who spent seven nights in two jails in 2005. He was strip-searched at both facilities before a judge confirmed that he had been arrested in error and let him go.

“They strip-searched him twice in the most horrific way imaginable,” said Florence’s attorney, Susan Chana Lask. “At that point, you’re just degraded.” Florence, a manager of a car-leasing company, is among a large number of people across the U.S. whose controversial strip searches after arrests on minor infractions, have divided the lower courts. While most appellate courts have held that such searches are unconstitutional, four recent decisions have upheld the practice as a way of maintaining prison security.

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