The Minnesota Supreme Court has thrown out a Minneapolis man’s drug conviction, ruling that a forced body cavity search violated his constitutional rights. Authorities searched Guntallwon Brown, suspected of crack cocaine possession, while he was strapped down and under sedation. The State Court of Appeals ruled the search was reasonable, but a majority on the high court disagreed. Justice Paul Thissen writes, “If a coerced invasion of one’s [body] cavity – an area inherently personal and private – while sedated and in front of strangers is not a serious and substantial intrusion of an individual’s… personal privacy and bodily integrity, we cannot fathom what is.” The high court says instead of a forced procedure, investigators could have retrieved the bag through natural elimination.
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