Web posted Friday, December 28, 2001
Seeking courthouse search
attorney at law
To the editor:
Many people object to the assembly-line searches
at some courthouse entrances. Are prospective jurors objecting because they
beleive that there is no probable cause for the searches, or are they just
trying to avoid jury duty?
I am an attorney doing research on this topic.
I am interested in details about any instances where individuals have refused
to be searched at the entrance to any courthouses. Many courthouses have
search procedures that include metal detectors and baggage X-rays. I am interested
in researching wheth er courthouse searches are treated as consensual encounters
and how courthouses have dealt with refusals. I am particularly interested
in refusals by seated jurors, prospective jurors, subpoenaed witnesses, defendants,
lawyers and anyone whose attendance is compelled.
I am researching whether there have been
any of the following: If seated jurors, prospective jurors, subpoenaed witnesses,
defendants and lawyers have arrived at courthouses at their appointed times
and announced that they would not submit to courthouse searches? If they
telephoned (or wrote letters) ahead of time and announced that they would
arrive on schedule but not submit to the courthouse searches? If any had
lawyers file motions ahead of each scheduled appearance to object to the
prospective searches and to announce that they would arrive on schedule but
not submit? If any "fully informed jury" groups have pamphleted courthouses
with information about refusing to submit to courthouse searches? And when
prospective jurors object to searches, is it because they philosophically
oppose the searches on the grounds of a lack of probable cause, or is it
merely used as a way to avoid jury duty? Anyone who knows of any such incidents
please send details.
Readers' Views, The Examiner, P.O. Box 459,
Independence, Mo. 64051.
Readers' Views, The Blue Springs Examiner,
P.O. Box 1057, Blue Springs, Mo. 64013.