What is a Strip Search?
A strip search is a type of search in which a person is required to remove some or all their clothing so that the police can inspect their body and clothing for evidence. A strip search is not the same as a pat-down search, which is a less invasive type of search that does not require a person to remove any clothing.
Can the Police Strip Search me?
The Supreme Court of Canada has established that strip searches are only permissible when there are reasonable grounds to believe that the search is necessary to find weapons, drugs, or other evidence that could be used to harm someone or lead to an escape from custody.
A strip search is considered a serious intrusion on a person’s privacy and dignity, and it can only be conducted if the police officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the search is necessary to find evidence of an offence, or to protect the safety of the person being searched or others.
In addition, the police officer must have no other reasonable alternative to a strip search and must conduct the search in a manner that is as minimally invasive as possible, given the circumstances. The search must be conducted by an officer of the same sex as the person being searched, and it must take place in a private location, away from the view of others.
If you believe that you have been subjected to an unjustified strip search by a police officer, you should speak to a lawyer as soon as possible. The lawyers at Lockyer Zaduk Zeeh have a wealth of experience dealing with Charter issues. This includes unlawful arrests; searches of homes, vehicles, and wiretap investigations; and right to counsel issues. Please give us a call at 416-613-0416 to schedule a consultation.