On August 31, 2011, CNN's Washington D.C. Bureau Senior Producer William Mears and Correspondent Kate Bolduan interviewed Susan Chana Lask about her prison strip search case. The U.S. Supreme Court granted certioriari on April 5, 2011. Argument is October 12, 2011. The issue before the United States Supreme Court is whether the Fourth Amendment permits a jail to conduct a suspicionless strip search whenever an individual is arrested for minor offenses such as violating a dog leash law or failure to pay a court fine, that are not crimes. The CNN interview airs around October 11, 2011. Here's what Ms. Lask discussed about the case.
In the interview Ms. Lask explains our rights under the constitution, what she hopes the U.S. Supreme Court Justices will understand from this case after hearing argument and what went wrong at the prisons that led to her taking this to the Supreme Court. The case involves an Albert Florence who was arrested on a warrant for a non-criminal offense that he failed to pay a court fine. It was later found that he paid the fine and the warrant was a mistake after Florence was in jail for 6 days and strip searched twice in two prisons. The Countie spointed out Floserious arrest history, including a his felony arrest, prior to the warrant leading to his strip searches.
In 2005, Ms. Lask filed the case for her client Albert Florence in New Jersey Federal District Court. By 2008, she was the first attorney in New Jersey to win summary judgment against the prisons for unlawfully strip searching non-criminal arrestees. The prisons appealed to the Third Circuit which reversed her win in 2010. Ms. Lask explained to the U.S. Supreme Court that they need to hear this case because the Circuit Courts throughout the United States had differing opinions on the strip search issue. "It's not about winning or losing, we need a final answer and only the Supreme Court can do that.", Lask says. Read about the case, U.S. Supreme Court Briefs filed, pleadings and more.
Ms. Lask says, "The CNN team was the most sophisticated media crew to be interviewed by. Senior Producer William Mears is more than brilliant and Correspondent Kate Bolduan was an incredible interviewer."