Skip to comments.(Florida) State Attorney: Shaking of bras during searches 'demeaning'
Posted on 06/20/2013 9:30:57 AM PDT by rarestia
The State Attorney's Office that covers Polk county has criticized a Lakeland Police officer for his method of searching a female for drugs.
State Attorney Jerry Hill wrote the Department saying Officer Dustin Fetz's request for a woman to shake her bra to free any hidden drugs was 'demeaning.'
Hill went on to say the method used on the May 21 traffic stop was also ineffective and dangerous, according to Bay News 9's coverage partner, The Lakeland Ledger.
Hill's letter to Police Chief Lisa Womack said an investigation showed Fetz did not have a reason to ask for such a search.
During the stop, Fetz asked the woman to lift her shirt, pull her bra away from her chest and shake it.
Fetz asked the woman to shake her bra a second time, and a search of her, her boyfriend and their car revealed no illegal items.
Hill said other Lakeland officers had used the method and called it a "major training deficiency."
The incident came to the State Attorney's attention after the Ledger posted a letter to the editor from Richard Wiley, a lawyer who knows the searched woman.
Womack ordered an internal investigation the day after the letter ran and Fetz went on paid leave for four days.
He's been with the Department since 2008.
The Office found Fetz did have reason to stop Zoe Brugger on West Beacon Road because of her broken headlight.
Investigators said the search violated her constitutional rights, but was not a criminal act.
The investigator said Brugger said she felt threatened and shouted for Fetz to stop as he searched the vehicle.
Fetz told the investigator the bra-shaking technique was well-known, but he was never formally trained to do it.
Brugger received a ticket and a notice to appear in court.
Officer Jeremy Williams, who later arrived at the scene, told the investigator he thought the search was improper.
The police dash-camera footage of the stop had no audio, which also violates police policy.
I'm having a real hard time rectifying this response. How is a violation of a person's Constitutional rights NOT a criminal act?
the officer was just following standard tsa search procedures.
Because if it were, 99% of all government officials would be in prison.
A common example would be an officer or detective questioning someone who is under arrest and has invoked their right to remain silent. The person then makes an incriminating statement and gets convicted in court. Then on appeal, the court rules that the continued questioning was a violation of the Fifth Amendment right to remain silent. No crime was committed because of the rights violation.
Shoulda got a female cop to do a search if it was called for
A headlight out is not probable cause to search for drugs unless during the stop, there was something that look out of kilter ( the headlight analogy, with the bra search struck a cord, though)
What about a failure to dim the beams?
At least he didn’t do a cavity search right on the highway like the cops in Dallas did.
I'm sure Eric Holder could shed some light on that. Or not.
“I’m having a real hard time rectifying this response. How is a violation of a person’s Constitutional rights NOT a criminal act?”
When they’re a Caucasian?
New AAA/Conde Nast Advisory:
Insufficient resolution to be certain, but the motive for this "search" may be what one would guess.
“Brugger received a ticket and a notice to appear in court.”
Appear in court for a broken headlihht? Are u kidding? What a waste of taxpayer money@
He probably did not think about it at the time.And why he did not plant drugs while he was searching the car is another question. He either was out of “evidence” or so angry at his authority being questioned it slipped his mind.
especially if no tip was forthcoming
It is a criminal act. See 18USC242.
Which did warrant a four day paid vacation- er... leave.
But can she cook?
She would appear to be hot enough to be able to cook something up on short notice.
There should be extremely steep consequences for any officer of a court, TSA, etc. violating constitutional rights.