The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday in an 8-1 decision that the strip search of a 13-year-old girl suspected of concealing ibuprofen was illegal, reported USA Today.
Savana Redding, then 13, was strip searched when school officials received an unverified tip, reported Reuters. The Arizona middle school prohibits the use, possession or sale of any drug on school grounds, including prescription and over-the-counter medications, as reported by BBC News.
The Associated Press reported that Justice David Souter said: “What was missing from the suspected facts that pointed to Savana was any indication of danger to the students from the power of the drugs or their quantity, and any reason to suppose that Savana was carrying pills in her underwear.”
American Civil Liberties Union lawyer Adam Wolf said, “Students and those who care about their well-being can breathe a sigh of relief. Today’s ruling affirms that schools are not constitutional dead zones.”
The court also voted 7-2 that the school officials were not liable, reported ABC News, saying that despite the fact that the search was unconstitutional, school officials “are nevertheless protected from liability through qualified immunity.”