Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Arresting middle-school girls to teach them a lesson is (surprise!) not reasonable

Dear parents and teachers of middle-school girls:

We feel your pain. But be careful when you seek the intervention of a sheriff's deputy---even if he is a school resource officer. You don't want to risk an undifferentiated group of allegedly feuding 12- and 13-year-old girls getting arrested en masse because the officer decides that's the best course of action "to prove a point and make [them] mature a lot faster."

"The arrest of a middle schooler . . . cannot be justified as a scare tactic, a lesson in maturity, or a chastisement for perceived disrespect." And thus the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court's grant of summary judgment to three arrested girls on Fourth Amendment grounds in their 1983 action.

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