May 8, 2009 By Wallin & Klarich

Due to Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney’s Efforts, Federal Court Makes Limits On Prison Officials’ Ability To Routinely Strip Search Inmates

Having to go to prison can be one of the most frightening experiences any person can go through. Couple that fear with the embarrassment and humiliation of being strip searched and the experience can be absolutely terrible. However, a recent court ruling held that prisons cannot routinely strip search drunk drivers and other non-drug, non-violent arrestees without reason to think they are hiding contraband.

A prisoner was strip searched on each of 15 weekends she spent at a prison on a second drunken-driving offense. Another prisoner was arrested and strip searched for missing a court date in a domestic dispute. Courts have typically noted the humiliation inherent in visual and bodily searches. However, courts have had the task of balancing a person’s Fourth Amendment search and seizure protection against the prison’s need to maintain order.

The court held that “conducting strip searches on persons who are not arrested for offenses associated with contraband, have never been arrested on any such charges, and who are not carrying any contraband at the time of the arrest bears “no discernible relationship to security needs.'”This ruling by the Federal Court means that unless a prisoner has contraband on them, or is arrested for a crime involving contraband, it is unlawful for prison officials to conduct a strip search.

If you have been charged with a crime, it is imperative that you hire an experienced California criminal defense attorney. Hiring an experienced criminal defense law firm can greatly increase your chances of maintaining your freedom. The attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have been helping people for over 30 years.

Please feel free to contact Wallin & Klarich to discuss your case. You can contact us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-888-280-6839, or go to our website at for more information.

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