CALIFORNIA CRIMINAL DEFENSE: HARASSING PAROLE SEARCHES ARE DANDY
The officer contacted the defendant and found out that he was on parole. Sanders (31 Cal.4th 318) permits a parole search. The only limitation on that search is em>Reyes (19 Cal.4th 743), which says that the search can't be arbitrary, capricious, or harassing.
The defense claims that this was a public strip search, and was thus harassing. The Court of Appeal goes to some pains to rule that this was not a public strip search. The search, though in public, was conducted in the back of a hotel parking lot in an area that didn't face the street.
They describe the search as the officer. lowering the defendant's pants a foot or so, then pulling back the elastic waistband of his underwear, permitting a visual search of his crotch area. The
only item of clothing the officer removed was the defendant's belt, the defendant's private parts were not exposed, and there's no evidence the officer touched the defendant's private area, he simply retrieved the bag of drugs. We're going to have to argue that had the officer done much more than this, it would qualify as harassing.
People v. Smith; 2009 DJ DAR 5224; DJ, 4/10/09; C/A 1st