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NC Supreme Court punts on Brunswick Co. student bra search case

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RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- North Carolina's Supreme Court wants to know who witnessed a contested drug search involving a 15-year-old at an alternative school who had to untuck her shirt and pull out her bra with her thumb.

The state's high court on Friday struck down a lower appeals court decision siding with the student that the bra-lift search at Brunswick County Academy in 2008 was "degrading, demeaning and highly intrusive."

The Supreme Court says it wants a lower court to determine more facts about what happened and who was present when the unnamed girl was searched.

State officials asked the Supreme Court to decide whether the search violated the Constitution's protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. The result is expected to affect North Carolina's 1.5 million public school students.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Schools no matter what kind

Schools no matter what kind they are should stop acting like the students are all prisoners. There should have been someone present before a search took place. Parents need to give their permission before a search can be made on all students. Male or female there is already too much going on in the Brunswick County School system that gets covered up on a daily basis. So I totally agree that the school had over stepped its limits. And this young lady is lucky that her parents have took this to the court system to make changes in future events. This shows that not all students or families of these students belong in the stereotype that they are given.

Schools

don't need parental permission to conduct a search of a student. School administrators have the authority to conduct a full search of a student if they have reasonable suspicion (not probable cause) that the student has violated either a school rule or is engaged in criminal activity (drug possession/weapon possession etc).
No search warrant is needed because the administrators operate under a case from the USSC that is the adoptive legal standard in NC. The case is New Jersey vs T.L.O..
As long as the administrators meet the "two prong test" of TLO, that the search is justified at its inception & reasonable in scope, then they are on solid legal ground. The School Resource Officer would be on solid legal ground as well if they were present for the search and were working in conjunction with school administrators.
If the administrators had individualized reasonable suspicion in this case I don't see where the search itself wouldn't be upheld. Whether or not person's of the opposite sex should have been present during the search is another matter.

Parental notification ...

Yes perhaps they should have notified the 'parent' AND the school resource officer before conducting the search. That way, when drugs are found, the 'parent' can be carted off to jail along with the kid ... either for knowing about/providing said drugs, or for their active warrants which they likely have. Since our taxpayer dollars are supporting these mongrels anyway, at least we can save on jail transportation by doubling-up!

Now...The Whole Story

Not a news story with a Hole in it...(The rest of the Story)

"Carolina's Supreme Court said Friday it wants to know who witnessed a contested drug search involving a 15-year-old at an alternative school who had to untuck her shirt and pull out her bra with her thumb.

The state's high court on Friday struck down a lower appeal's court decision on behalf of the student that found the 2008 bra-lift search at Brunswick County Academy was "degrading, demeaning and highly intrusive."

State officials appealed that ruling and asked the Supreme Court to decide whether the search violated the Constitution's protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. The result is expected to affect North Carolina's 1.5 million public school students.

The Supreme Court said Friday it wants a lower court to find out more facts about what happened, including who was present when the unnamed girl was searched.

***(Now the kicker....why the story made the news, to all you cut and paste reporters)*** KEEP READING BELOW

The search reportedly occurred in front of three adults, two of them men. Female students including the one identified only as T.A.S. were required to pull their undergarments away from their skin so that any hidden drugs or paraphernalia would fall out.

Attorneys for the state argued that the search was minimally invasive because no skin was shown.

The contested search of T.A.S. found drug paraphernalia and a white powder identified as Percocet. The student asked a trial judge to prevent the evidence from being used, but the judge refused. She pleaded guilty in March 2009 to two drug-related misdemeanors.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/article/NC-Supreme-Court-punts-on-stude...

Re: Rest of the Story

Oh come on WWAY, if you are going to "copy and paste" a news report from another .com at least "copy and paste" the entire author's work and give credit to the source. Adding a little, local, research to the copied report would give it some semblance of, local relevance, which our, local, news .coms regularly fail to produce.

Wilmington Observer

If the Police Resource Officer

was present, he should have called the parents and secured a female officer as well as a search warrant.

Appropriate

This is totally appropriate for the school that the search was conducted. As a former south brunswick student, I know of girls that would stuff drugs into their bra's at that age.

Things like this are really to help kids even if it doesnt seem so in the moment.

Unreasonable?

What exactly was 'unreasonable' about conducting this search? It seems completely reasonable to me that this individual was searched considering there was a question as to whether she had drugs on her person. This particular school caters to the juvenile delinquints of Brunswick County ... children already convicted of criminal activities, and those whose parents are actively grooming them to follow in their own felonious footsteps. A simple and valid search for drugs is minute compared to the real problems at this school!

The search violated the

The search violated the Students Constitutional Rights. You have protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.

It comes down to

It comes down to this........if the girl was suspected of having contraband on her person, her parents should have been called in before any search was conducted, period. The school has overstepped their authority in this case.

Loco Parentis

When your child walks through the doors of the school, the school becomes the "acting parental figure" of that child with all rights and responsibilities afforded that child's legal guardian. If the school has suspicion that the child was in possession of an illegal item or substance they had a duty, to the other students, and faculty,, to search the child in order to maintain a safe, orderly and drug free learning environment. The child may have been offended but, one does not have the, constitutional, right to not be offended.

Wilmington Observer

No, you are incorrect.

No, you are incorrect. According to the NC General Statutes, parents do NOT have to be present for a search nor must they be present during questioning. Know your laws before identifying false boundaries.

In any other school, yes ...

... but in this particular school, the 'parents' would only worsen the situation and cause such a scene that they would likely end up being escorted out of the school in handcuffs. We're talking about the ghetto mentality here. The school was in the right.

school,yes

are you really serious ghetto mentality what the heck is a ghetto mentality.

Really

Really, there was a reason for this and I am sure if they were able to get up with the parents it would have been awhile before they would get there. I am sure the girl would have to go to the bathroom and they she would have flushed the drugs..

I attend the school, and

I attend the school, and trust me when I say that they could've just held her and watched her. They've done it with kids before, and they can do it again. There's issues with new administration that's trying to teach the kids, and I use this in quotations, "They're in charge."