New Jersey v. TLO

Alexis DeKeyzer

Summary: The New Jersey v. TLO SCOTUS case occurred in 1980 at a high school in New Jersey. A current teacher found two girls smoking in the bathroom which was prohibited in that specific area as a result the students were sent to the Vice Principles office. When the Vice Principle heard about the incident he demanded to search T.L.O's purse which is the young 14 year old freshman found in the bathroom. While searching the purse he found a pack of cigarettes, package of cigarette rolling papers, marijuana pipe, empty plastic bags, one-dollar bills, a list of students who owed T.L.O money, and some letters. The letters contained information indicating the T.L.O had been selling marijuana at school. The Vice Principle, Choplick, called the police after T.L.O arrived at the police station she admitted that she had been selling marijuana at school. The State of New Jersey brought charges against T.L.O. The evidence they used was T.L.O's admission items from her purse. Soon after T.L.O stated that the search violated the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure. She tried to have the evidence removed from her case as well as her confession. She argued that her confession should be suppressed because it happened as a result of the unreasonable  search. The juvenile court turned down her argument the court stated that school official may search a student if that official has a "reasonable cause to believe that the search is  necessary to maintain school discipline or enforce school policies."

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