Florence V. Theodore Case Study

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Case Citation: Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Burlington, 566?U.S. ___ (2012)

Parties: Albert W Florence,?? Plaintiff
Board of Chosen Freeholders of the County of Burlington et. al,? Defendants

Facts: Albert Florence was arrested during a traffic stop by a state trooper as he had a bench warrant for his arrest due to a failed appearance at a fine enforcement hearing. He was first detained at Burlington County Detention Center where like every incoming inmate; he showered with the delousing agent and underwent a strip search while under the officers? supervision. On transfer to the Essex County Correctional Facility the prisoner was subject to a mandatory shower, clothes examination by the officials and a strip search.
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Searching procedures at county jails strike a reasonable and required balance between the inmates' privacy and the institutions need to safeguard the safety of both the inmates and staff.

Reasoning:

Issue 1: The court held that correctional officials need sensible discretion to formulate practical solutions to troubles facing correctional facilities. This involves devising reasonable search policies that limit the entry of any kind of contraband in the facilities. Thus, the plaintiff's plea of a 4th and 14th Amendment right violation on a violation of privacy is overridden by the fact that detainees and prisoners pose a significant risk to each other, and thus the strip searches are validated.

Issue 2: The court affirmed that with the entrance of new inmates and detainees, significant risks are created against the staff, the existing detainees as well as the new ones. As jail officials lack knowledge on a detainee's past criminal activities, it is important that they are all treated the same and thus subject to the same invasive search procedures. The court further asserts that is important to conduct the same searches across the board as new detainees with no history of violent or drug-related criminal past can be used as mules to smuggle contraband into these

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