Fifth Circuit Says No, You Fucking May Not Strip Search A Classful Of Female Students To Find $50

from the because-of-course-you-can't-the-hell-were-you-thinking dept

The Fifth Circuit Appeals Court convened to write an opinion [PDF] the judges shouldn't have had to write. But then, of course, they had to because the lower court screwed everything up. The first paragraph sums up the issue -- and the appeals court's decision -- succinctly and devastatingly. (h/t Raffi Melkonian)

During a sixth-grade choir class, an assistant principal allegedly ordered a mass, suspicionless strip search of the underwear of twenty-two preteen girls. All agree the search violated the girls’ constitutional rights under Texas and federal law. Even so, the district court dismissed the girls’ lawsuit against the school district for failure to state a claim. We reverse.

The school admitted it violated the students' rights. It admitted it performed a search without justification or guiding policies. It all but started cutting settlement checks and yet the lower court said no viable claim was made by the plaintiffs.

The background: in an attempt to locate $50 that went missing during a choir class, the entire class was searched. Given the nature of the search, this quickly changed the definition of "class" from a "a number of students studying the same course" to "a number of students suing the school." This maybe wouldn't have gone as far as it did, but for the invaluable assistance of the school's police officer.

When no money turned up, the school police officer “suggested that girls like to hide things in their bras and panties.”

I sincerely hope this person is now chronically underemployed. Why escalate things needlessly? No one was looking for weapons or even illegal drugs. It was cash -- something easy to lose. That $50 has gone missing does not necessarily mean it was stolen. That it may have been stolen does not necessarily mean the female class members would have stashed it in their undergarments.

Without seeking permission from the students or informing their parents, the vice principal had the school nurse perform a strip search of all the students.

Higgins took all twenty-two girls in the choir class to the female school nurse, who strip searched them, taking them one at a time into a bathroom, where she “check[ed] around the waistband of [their] panties,” loosened their bras, and checked “under their shirts.” The girls “were made to lift their shirts so they were exposed from the shoulder to the waist.”

Do the ends justify the means?

No money was found.

The district's policy for searches is a mess. An unconstitutional mess. As the court points out, it gives no guidance to administrators on how to reach its self-generated standard of "reasonable cause" before performing a search. However, it does tell administrators searches by school personnel should be as non-intrusive as possible and only when there's a "reasonable" belief contraband might be found.

The only discipline handed out for this mass violation of rights was a memo chastising the Vice Principal for performing a search to find something not actually considered to be "contraband." But the court points out that this memo misses the whole point of Constitutional protections and the school's obligation to leave those (and their students) unmolested.

Regardless, the supposed lack of “contraband” appears to have been the principal’s only concern; the memo never criticized the search for invading the underwear of twenty-two preteen girls, or for doing so without particularized suspicion.

In fact, the principal's memo seemed to suggest strip searching students was acceptable as long as the principal was given a heads up.

The memo further made clear that, at least in the principal’s mind, such strip searches of students are not per se improper under school district policy. Rather than forbidding all strip searches going forward, the memo requested: “In the future, if you feel a student must have a search requiring a strip search, please notify me before proceeding.”

Addressing the lower court's fuck ups, the Appeals Court first points out the question of Constitutionality has been answered firmly, with some of that coming from the defendant school's own admissions.

[T]his clearly established law means that Higgins violated the constitutional rights of the twenty-two girls unless Higgins reasonably suspected that the missing $50 cash (1) would be found on that particular girl’s person and either (2) would be found specifically in that girl’s underwear or (3) would pose a dangerous threat to students. For what are perhaps obvious reasons, the parties do not dispute that the alleged search failed all three conditions. It was clearly unconstitutional.

The school tried to claim the plaintiffs had nothing to support their claims. It tried to portray this as allegations about an unconstitutional policy. But the Appeals Court notes the plaintiffs are actually alleging the school had done nothing at all to provide search guidance to its administrators. This changes the judicial math a bit. [Emphasis in the original.]

To be clear, the argument is not that the school district’s written search policies are facially unconstitutional or that they caused the alleged constitutional violation by themselves. Rather, the “official municipal policy” on which Plaintiffs attempt to hang Monell liability is the school district’s alleged policy of providing no training whatsoever regarding its employees’ legal duties not to conduct unreasonable searches. In other words, as currently presented, this is a “failure to train” case.

This allows the plaintiffs to move forward with their allegations, overturning the lower court's dismissal. The Appeals Court notes this reversal isn't meant to suggest the plaintiffs have enough evidence to prevail on this claim -- only that they should not have seen their case dismissed during the first round of pleadings by the lower court.

But what seems obvious to everyone was somehow unclear to the vice principal who ordered the searches. The court notes there really can only be one entity to blame in this matter: the school itself for failing to give officials proper training on students' constitutional rights. Just having a policy several steps removed from the actual limitations demanded by the Fourth Amendment isn't enough. The courts don't expect police officers to know the nuances of every Fourth Amendment decision governing the searches of full-grown adults so it sure as hell isn't going to expect a school administrator will have this all nailed down without outside instruction.


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  • icon
    hij (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 9:02am

    Train them not to be a jackass

    Back when I was in middle and high school I always assumed that school officials were jerks. Now I find out that an appeals court believes that they need special training to not strip search preeteen girls when looking for something had it appeared still would not mean it was the same thing they were looking for.... I was right all this time.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 5:48pm

      Re: Train them not to be a jackass

      Sounds like a level of civil servant privilege comes with the assumption of cretinism since anyone else would be subject to 'dear god ignorance of the law is not an excuse especially for that you filthy degenerate'.

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    • icon
      Bergman (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:56pm

      Re: Train them not to be a jackass

      Solely on the basis of a K-12 education, the court system expects everyone to be sufficiently educated in the law to avoid breaking the law in general, and especially so when it comes to laws that directly impact their profession.

      As the old saying goes, ignorance is not an excuse.

      Professional educators, much like professional law enforcement, go to school to prepare to be able to do their jobs. That schooling provides much greater knowledge of the rules of their profession than a high school graduate gets, which should mean that they have less ability to claim ignorance as an excuse.

      Except they not only claim that ignorance of the law is an excuse, the courts rush to agree with them that there's no way they could reasonably be expected to know enough about the law to avoid breaking it. Even though they need the same K-12 education to even apply for that extra career training, they're held to a lower standard of obedience to the law than someone with just a K-12 education.

      But the court will still insist that ignorance is not an excuse.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 3 Jul 2018 @ 2:01am

        "Ignorance is not an excuse."

        But then SCOTUS countered this notion ruling the police don't need to know the laws they enforce and can rely on guesswork so long as they do it in good faith.

        So I'm assuming, the more authority and power you have, the less responsibility you have knowing what laws apply to you.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2018 @ 10:38am

      Re: Train them not to be a jackass

      Unfortunately this is the absurd and unfortunate result of schools enforcing "zero tolerance" policies. The administrations no longer use the brain they were born with and blindly follow rules that only make things worse. Administrators are escalating problems out of control instead of ameliorating them. We're raising generations of kids here in the US that are ignorant of history, ignorant of thinking for themselves, ignorant of science and math, and wanting everything pure'd and spoon fed so there's no harsh lumps in their information or, gods forbid, offend someone's sensibilities. Kids are being expelled from primary schools for trivial infractions and minor rule offenses. This needs to stop.

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  • icon
    discordian_eris (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:07am

    The Problem in a Nutshell

    The courts don't expect police officers to know the nuances of every Fourth Amendment decision governing the searches of full-grown adults so it sure as hell isn't going to expect a school administrator will have this all nailed down without outside instruction.

    If they are not expected to understand exactly what they are doing, why are they even allowed to do it? When did the US become a society that expects every citizen to be aware of the law, except for those with any ability/responsibility to actually enforce it?

    Good luck trying this kind of crap as a citizen in court. It won't fly. And if you base on appeal on lack of knowledge of the esoterica of the law, they will simply say - NO. As citizens we are required to have an encyclopedic knowledge of the law, all precedents, all appeals court and supreme court decisions which may bear on our situation.

    It's good to be holder of authority in America now. It means that your authority comes with no real responsibilities, but most especially, no consequences.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 6:24pm

      Re: The Problem in a Nutshell

      Well said!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Brianna S, 3 Jul 2018 @ 4:13pm

      Re: The Problem in a Nutshell

      Having worked in a school district myself, our training was that the limits of staff searches were to district property only (lockers, etc), and only with an SRO (School Resource Officer [police basically] present. Any other searches of a student's person or possessions had to be done by the SRO or police. If a crime was suspected, such as the theft of $50 in this case, we were to notify the SROs/police and let them handle it with their training. It limits District liability, and theoretically protects the student.

      Of course, we couldn't simply accuse an entire class either. You have to have names. We had to be able to name a suspect or suspects.

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      • icon
        discordian_eris (profile), 7 Jul 2018 @ 12:30pm

        Re: Re: The Problem in a Nutshell

        It doesn't help that the Supremes have ruled that minors have limited constitutional rights. I have never bought their specious reasoning on that.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:07am

    It always shocks me what schools and law enforcement in general are allowed to get away with.

    If a non-cop shoots a person dead because they have a tough job that's all sorts of jail time.

    If a non-cop/school-person strip searches 22 girls I'd be shocked to hear the person in question made it to court alive without being beaten to death by ~44 parents/guardians.

    Perks of some jobs I guess.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:15am

      Re:

      Police Union Response: "Hey, at least the school resource officer didn't taze or shoot any of them. Give them some credit!"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    scotts13 (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:22am

    Re:

    And if one of those students, reasonably and correctly, had refused the search - then what? Handcuffed, tazed... shot?

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:41am

      Re: Re:

      shot, then tazed, handcuffed at the viewing while they mash the victims hands against their cellphone to unlock it while yelling "THIS GIRL WAS A PIECE OF SHIT ANYWAYS DID THE WORLD A FAVOR"

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2018 @ 3:24am

      Re: Re:

      depends: in your hypothetical, was she white?

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  • icon
    ECA (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:34am

    In what state??

    Can the school BYPASS State/federal and Common decency laws??

    TEXAS..

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:43am

    Sue them personally

    Make the people responsible have to defend themselves from each and every lawsuit. They need to feel the financial burden from their choices or they will continue to wield their petty power.

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  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:45am

    But but but they did it all in good faith that there was nothing wrong with strip searching children.

    One wonders if they strip searched the adults as well, kids aren't the only ones with sticky fingers & focusing the fuzz on other targets is something a real criminal would do.

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  • identicon
    I.T. Guy, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:50am

    If that were my kid, I would have gladly plead guilty to the assault and battery charge that would have followed. Maybe if this numb-nut went home with a broken jaw or broken nose he would think twice next time and it would send a clear message this kind of shit is not permissible.

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    • identicon
      David, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:00pm

      Re:

      If that were my kid, I would have gladly plead guilty to the assault and battery charge that would have followed.

      You would not be in a position to plead anything, and the Grand Jury would refuse to indict the officer since he was forced to kill you in self-defense in order not to suffer bodily harm that might have lessened his prospects of wearing mini skirts in public.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:27pm

        Re: Re:

        And people wonder why I would never send my kids to public school.

        I can't say that if I were the parent of one of these children I would not be moved to cause a little mayhem myself. Going directly after the people that did this starting with the principal that ordered it would be certain to put a stop to it.

        It would be unfriendly and it would soon become a very public affair. If they escalate, then you must escalate it to the stratosphere. People will damn sure take notice then!

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 1:16pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          "And people wonder why I would never send my kids to public school."

          There's no doubt that a high percentage of families there also avoid sending their kids to public schools, but for entirely different reasons.

          Lanier Middle School is an inner-city school that many of Houston's most exclusive and expensive neithborhoods are zoned to, along with (presumably) some of the poorest, most dysfunctional, crime-ridden and drug-plagued areas in town.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 6:33pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Its the only way they would learn. Placing the blame on the schools 'training' is a load of shit.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 7:05pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          As if private schools are any better, in fact many private schools are worse.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 4 Jul 2018 @ 11:24am

          Re: Re: Re:

          The Ken McElroy approach then? Even cooperative witnesses are known to give really bad descriptions in the moment like 'he was wearing a hat'.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:25pm

      Re:

      That's not how it works with LEOs in the US. You would be killed for resisting. Even if you knocked the guy out, it wouldn't change that the entire force would come at you as soon as they knew whodunit.

      You cannot hope to get justice for your child by being open and upfront about your grievances with those who have authority to end your and your family's life. Justice against those responsible must be obtained quietly, with nothing linking you to its dispensation later on. And for pete's sake don't talk about doing it before, nor ever brag about it on the internet after you're done.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:57am

    Everyone involved with this underage strip-search whether floating the idea, to agreeing with it, to just following order, need to be jailed for some period of time and placed in a sex registry.

    This goes beyond stupidity into territory any adult knows better.

    The juveniles in this case were victimized. The clearest of bright line must be drawn for the bumbling dolts, or predators seeking out such opportunity, are aware of life devastating outcomes.

    All that was required was one sensible person to say "Hell no. You're out of your mind and a sick person."

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:59am

    Fifty or a hundred years ago, such action would have been scandalous, and unthinkable. But now we live in a society that has enforced strip-searches for everyone who wants to travel. Object to your "private" parts being touched or viewed? Then don't get on the plane, it's as simple as that. Prisons, of course, are far worse. Now that we've been conditioned to accept such draconian violations of privacy as a normal part of everyday life in modern times, things that would have been not just shocking, but completely unacceptable to earlier generations of Americans, we should not be surprised that such depraved barbarian mentality is now creeping into public schools.

    Medical professions who willingly participate in any forced "security" or punitive actions, from executions to strip searches to forced catheterizations, should at the very least have their licenses to practice medicine revoked. They should never be allowed to do things that would be considered a crime if committed by anyone else, and "just following orders" should not be given any more leeway than it was at Nuremberg.

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  • icon
    ShadowNinja (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:27pm

    $50 has no identifier on it

    Even if they found $50, how would they know it was the $50 they were looking for?

    $50 is $50, no one would be able to identify it from any other pile of $50 in cash.

    And what if they found multiple people had $50 on them?

    Contrary to what power hungry school staff might think, it's not illegal or suspicious to carry money on you.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:31pm

      Re: $50 has no identifier on it

      "Contrary to what power hungry school staff might think, it's not illegal or suspicious to carry money on you."

      ahem.... you are wrong... just check out a few civil forfeiture laws... it is totally suspicious to carry money of any amount around in cash or on prepaid cards.

      You are guilty until proven innocent, not a joke, just the straight up facts!

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:47pm

        Re: Re: $50 has no identifier on it

        That's not how civil forfeiture laws work.
        You are not guilty until proven innocent - technically.
        Your money however is. And in civil forfeiture, YOU aren't charged with anything.

        The $50 gets accused of being drug related, is arrested, automatically loses the case, and is spent by the arresting officer later. But you were never charged with any crime.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 1:01pm

          Re: Re: Re: $50 has no identifier on it

          Yes, excellent detail to point out, the property is indeed what is charged and not the person "in possession" of it.

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        • identicon
          David, 3 Jul 2018 @ 5:27am

          Re: Re: Re: $50 has no identifier on it

          In our law system, how can even money be "guilty until proven innocent" since it goes complete counter to our system of law.

          Not to mention that the money is part of our "effects" as mentioned in the 4th.

          Civil forfeiture should require a charge and conviction before the money is also found "guilty".

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2018 @ 6:49am

      Re: $50 has no identifier on it

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        ShadowNinja (profile), 3 Jul 2018 @ 9:19am

        Re: Re: $50 has no identifier on it

        And how many people who lose $50 would be able to recite the serial number?

        Zero that's who. No one obsessively writes down or memorizes the serial number of their cash.

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  • icon
    tom (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:29pm

    Wonder if the dim bulb that ordered the search even considered how to prove any money found was the money in question? Did he know the serial numbers? Even if the search had found cash, it could well have belonged to the girl(s) that had it. Pre-teens can legally carry money. He's lucky no cash was found. Could have escalated from a stupid search to charges of theft from a minor.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 12:47pm

    So who was the victim of the theft? and other questions

    I know this is certainly not the big issue here but it still has relevance:
    In the article, it is said that it was the whole class who were subject to the search... One would assume that none of them were then the original owner of the $50.
    Could this mean that it was a teacher? Is this the reason that it escalated so much?
    Did they have the serial number of the bill? What if one of them were supposed to go and get groceries after school and their parents gave them $50 for that? I was old enough to do this by myself when I was their age.
    What if they just had a birthday and they kept grannys present in their wallet?
    Did the teacher get searched? (unless he/she were the one who was missing $50) We had thefts on every workplace I have even been on and it is not like crime stops at a certain age. But the truth is that NO adult working at a school would EVER take being searched like this.
    This shitstorm stinks of petty vengeance and I hope, for the sake of their kids, that every single parent will move their children to another school. The school really deserves to go down from missing attendance and so does the administration and teachers involved.

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    • icon
      JoeCool (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 4:39pm

      Re: So who was the victim of the theft? and other questions

      Did the teacher get searched? (unless he/she were the one who was missing $50)

      Search them anyway. I'd bet whoever claimed the money was missing still had it... or never had it and was just out to scam some poor kids out of their lunch money. Jokes on them - none of them had any money.

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  • identicon
    edward g stafford, 2 Jul 2018 @ 1:44pm

    Ignorance of the law is not an excuse, or so they tell us.

    ... don't expect police officers to know the nuances of every Fourth Amendment decision governing ...

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  • icon
    Mononymous Tim (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 4:04pm

    Why don't morals ever enter into crap like this? Against the Constitution or not, it's WRONG, PERIOD! You prove you have no morals, you don't get to interface with the public anymore after you've gotten out of prison and registered as a sex offender.

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    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 4:30pm

      This is the world we live in.

      Apparently, enough people will discard their own ethics if they have a sufficiently high or influential authority imply they can or should.

      A crotch-grabbing President suffices.

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  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 4:32pm

    Hopefully this won't make it to the supreme court...

    ...the current iteration of which is in danger of making a narrow ruling in favor of the school which they promise is not to be construed to suggest mass strip-searching prepubescent girls is appropriate or legal.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 6:08pm

    A willing accomplice in the school nurse

    A willing accomplice in the school nurse.

    A school nurse with any backbone would of refused to be involved with this. Be it he or she loose their employment over such a refusal.

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    • identicon
      Cowardly Lion, 3 Jul 2018 @ 3:45am

      Re: A willing accomplice in the school nurse

      Agreed. How can it possibly be in a school nurses job description to strip-search children?

      Everyone involved with this needs to be a) summarily dismissed b) charged with abuse and c) added to the sex offenders register.

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  • icon
    afn29129 (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 6:19pm

    The money never was missing to begin with?

    This all assumes that there actually was $50 missing to begin with. What an excellent what for a student to retaliate against hi/her classmates. Say that there is some money missing and the school officials will leave no crotch UN-groped in a effort to find the money.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 7:51pm

    The new world order has usurped our government and it is now full of people with their heads up their asses and their hands up an entire nation of asses. Don't look to them for anything but the further destruction of our constitution and rights.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2018 @ 9:54pm

      Re:

      It is completely astonishing how easily these law enforcement types gobbled up the nwo's policing policies and aimed them at a beautiful nation of diversified people with the harshest intent on shackling this nation.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 2 Jul 2018 @ 11:15pm

    "Now remember: Groping pre-teens is WRONG, so don't get caught."

    The court notes there really can only be one entity to blame in this matter: the school itself for failing to give officials proper training on students' constitutional rights.

    Uh, no. The school has some blame to be sure for not setting out clear and concise rules making it crystal clear that strip-searching students is not allowed(though even then, why would they even think that something like that would need to be spelled out?), but the primary ones to blame are the ones who ordered and/or engaged in said strip-search.

    There was absolutely no reason they had to be told by anyone that what they were doing was wrong, so the fact that they did it anyway is more than enough to pile on the blame.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 Jul 2018 @ 5:48am

    I'm surprised the students did not call 911 to report the sexual assault taking place.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      The Wanderer (profile), 3 Jul 2018 @ 8:08pm

      Re:

      First: per the article, they were pre-teens - i.e., at most, 12 years old. (I'm far enough removed from such things to have forgotten which age the grades start counting at, so I can't pin it down based on "sixth grade".) Do you really expect kids of that age to have that sort of mindset?

      Second: given that a police officer (the one assigned to work at that school as its resource officer) was the one to have suggested searching their underthings in the first place, why would even kids who did have the mindset of "call in the police" have expected it to do any good?

      Third: maybe policies differ from one jurisdiction to another, but my strong impression is that in most schools - or at least most public school systems, although I don't see any confirmation offhand that this took place at a public school - the students aren't allowed to carry cell phones on school property during school hours. It's entirely possible that the kids wouldn't have had any way to call 911 while things were going on, even if the idea occurred to them and they didn't think it would be useless.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 3 Jul 2018 @ 9:34pm

        Grade school ages.

        Typically in the US, kids enter kindergarten at 5 or 6 (Late summer, early autumn birthdays go in early).

        So your typical graduating sixth grader (going on to intermediate school) is 12-years-old. Though some are 11.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 4 Jul 2018 @ 8:53am

        Re: Re:

        You don't have any kids or maybe just a bit naive.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Sok Puppette, 3 Jul 2018 @ 7:47am

    No one was looking for weapons or even illegal drugs.

    And that would have made it OK?

    You know it wouldn't. So stop fueling the knee-jerk panics out there by writing as if it would.

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    • identicon
      Jessica, 5 Jul 2018 @ 2:02am

      Re:

      11-12 year olds using drugs. I just do not see that happening. At least I really hope so. My optimism, that it have not gotten so bad. If my kids were using drugs at that age I would go berserk! Have gone berserk before so do not think a drug dealer would have dared to sell drugs to kids in that age with me around. Am not above beating up drug dealers. May be a woman however a steal pipe should do the trick nicely. If I just simply do not decide to stab the drug dealer in the liver. Thinking about my grandkids here. How can kids make you turn into a monster?!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 5 Jul 2018 @ 10:37am

        Cigarette madness

        The typical smoker starts around 11-12 years old, and while pot is not the gateway drug, tobacco definitely is.

        We're probably going to see more tweens and young teens experimenting with cannabis thanks to its legality (much like they experiment already with smoking and booze). However it's dysfunctionality (e.g. abuse at home, bullies, abusive teachers and schools, etc.) that will drive them to self-medicate.

        And that may even be a harm-reduction device in order to stop them from killing themselves from all the misery.

        A lot of our kids live in poverty. Most of them are neglected due to our expectation that all adults work full time or more. The United States hates its kids. And if we wanted them not resorting to drugs, maybe we should put our money (back) where our mouth is.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 6 Jul 2018 @ 6:22am

          Re: Cigarette madness

          A lot of our kids live in poverty. Most of them are neglected

          Do you have links to statistics for that? I'm not saying you're wrong but I am curious as to where you got that information as I have not heard that stated before in any of the statistics I have seen.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Gabriel (profile), 3 Jul 2018 @ 10:11am

    Why is the headline "Strip Search A Classful Of Female Students" instead of "Strip Search A Classful Of Students"? Is it legally significant that the students were female? Does anything in the ruling suggest that the violated rights were gender-specific? Would this case have been less bad or less notable if the students were mixed or all male?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    JoeHx, 3 Jul 2018 @ 11:50am

    i remember

    I remember in 11th grade english class some administrator was searching everybody in class one-by-one looking for a missing TV remote. It wasn't a strip-search, he just asked each person to empty their pockets. The remote turned up before he has a chance to finish, however.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jessica, 5 Jul 2018 @ 2:05am

    That none of the so called adults even considered how wrong that search was. Cheeses with biscuits! What is wrong with them?!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    FMHilton, 5 Jul 2018 @ 8:04pm

    Girls will be searched

    I wonder if the students had been boys, would they have been so willing to strip search them?

    Smacks of small town pettiness, ignorance and sexual deviancy.In that kind of mental fog, boys can pass the test, while girls are sexually assaulted at will.

    But still-didn't it occur to anyone involved that what they did was group gross sexual assault?

    Nah, that's just too much to think about...and $50 was the price of stupidity.

    Everyone should have been fired the second this happened. I hope the girls involved get the millions they deserve for having endured such a invasive breach of their constitutional rights.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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