On Thursday, the City Council will propose a bill requiring police officers to get permission from a suspect before they search them, reports the New York Post:
Under legislation being introduced Thursday, police officers would have to get consent for searches when they don’t have a warrant, aren’t making an arrest or don’t have probable cause.
Suspects currently have the right to reject a search — but police have no obligation to notify them of that right and certainly don’t need written permission.
It’s essentially an extension of the Miranda warning and comes on the heels of intense scrutiny over how the NYPD often conducts searches improperly, leading to a radical change in guidelines for weed possession.
Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch isn’t very supportive of the proposed legislation. “This kind of proposal makes it appear that the council is more interested in protecting criminals than keeping communities safe,” he said to the tabloid.
Although it’s framed by the paper and police advocates as a radical measure, it doesn’t sound too far off from what the NYPD itself proposed in 2008:
The New York City Police Department wants suspects to sign a consent form before searching their homes or cars, a move that eliminates the need for a warrant and is meant to provide police a layer of legal protection, Newsday has learned.
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