For the third time in a decade, New York City has agreed to pay millions of dollars to settle a lawsuit over the illegal strip searches of thousands of nonviolent prisoners, reports the New York Times. The settlement provides $33 million to 100,000 people who were strip-searched after being charged with misdemeanors and taken to jail.
Under the administration of Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, in 2001, the city settled a similar case filed on behalf of more than 50,000 people who were strip-searched as they waited to be arraigned, spending about $40 million. In 2005, the city agreed to pay several million dollars, this time to settle the claims of thousands of people who were illegally strip-searched in at least six detention centers. Plaintiffs’ attorney Richard Emery said it had been settled law since 1986 that it was unconstitutional to require people accused of minor crimes to strip naked.