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MA Prisoner’s Rights Not Violated by Strip Searches

MA Prisoner's Rights Not Violated by Strip Searches

In 1987, William Langton, a Massachusetts state prisoner, was strip searched every time he left or returned to his cell. Since he was never found in possession of contraband, he believed the searches were used as a harassment tool and filed suit in state court claiming that they violated his right to due process of law under the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The trial court issued a declaration that Langton's federal rights were not violated, but that declaration wasn't in the final judgment. Langton appealed.

On appeal, the Massachusetts Supreme Court agreed with the trial court that Langton's rights had not been violated. The Court did, however vacate the trial court judgment and remanded the case to the trial court to issue a judgment declaring that Langton's rights were not violated and that he was not entitled to relief. See: Langton v. Commissioner of Correction, et al., 404 Mass. 165 (MA 1989).

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Related legal case

Langton v. Commissioner of Correction