Man illegally strip searched during traffic stop

If you get pulled over by the cops, the last thing you expect is to have your pants and underwear pulled down in public. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened to one man in Minneapolis in 2009.

During a traffic stop near the Little Earth Community, Minneapolis Police strip searched a man after feeling a bulge in his jeans around his buttocks. The man could have faced drug charges, but a federal judge found that police violated his civil rights.

After being illegally strip searched, he sued the city, which settled the lawsuit for $76,500. Even though the city settled the lawsuit and the judge found the strip search unconstitutional, the police still defend not taking the man to a more private location to conduct a strip search by saying he could have had a gun concealed in his pants.

The police cite a recent event when a police officer was shot and killed after taking a suspect to a bathroom to conduct a strip search. Even though this man was not involved in the previous incident, police acted as though he was, which proved to be unconstitutional.

The man was humiliated by being exposed in public by the police. Minnesota Public Radio reports the man was known in the. Although the man may have been known to police and by people in the neighborhood as “bad,” a mere reputation doesn’t give officers the right to violate his rights. They did not have the right to strip search him in public. They should have taken him to a more private location to ensure his rights were protected.

Seeking the advice of a good criminal defense attorney can help ensure that your rights are protected when police overstep their bounds.

Source: MPR, “Mpls. reaches $77K settlement with man strip-searched in traffic stop,” Brandt Williams, Nov. 18, 2011

He has won jury trial cases in misdemeanor and felony cases and in DWI’s and non-DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. He is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

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