The U.S. Supreme Court has recently issued a ruling allowing police officers to stop and search vehicles based on anonymous tips. The 5-4 decision upholds an earlier ruling made by California courts.
Some have expressed concerns that the ruling opens the door to greater police intrusions into citizens’ lives, without authorization, or a legitimate basis to conduct those searches. For example, anonymous tippers can give tips without revealing their identities, and will suffer no consequences if their claims are false.
The new ruling may also disproportionately affect young black or African-American men. According to a recent Gallup Poll, approximately 25% of all black men under 35 years of age experienced unfair incidents with police or law enforcement in the past month.
Individuals are protected from civil rights violations by several state and federal laws. The federal Civil Rights Act of 1866 provides all individuals of different race, ancestry, or ethnic considerations the same rights as white citizens to enforce contracts and equal benefits of the law. Federal law also prohibits law enforcement officers and police from depriving the constitutional rights of an individual, acting under color of state law.
Axis Legal Counsel is a Los Angeles Civil Rights law firm that represents clients in numerous types of constitutional rights and civil liberties matters, ranging from violations of civil rights, privacy, free speech, constitutional rights, and numerous others.
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