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Proposed revision to Law Enforcement standard 1.2.8 Strip/Body Cavity Searches

At a recent meeting of the Standards Review and Interpretation Committee (SRIC) the committee directed staff to post for client comments the following proposed standard revision and associated Glossary terms.  Please post your comments prior to Friday September 3rd, 2021.


1.2.8 (LE1) (M M M M) (LE1) Strip/Body Cavity Search

The agency has written procedures for strip and body cavity searches. The procedures shall include:

 a. authority for conducting strip and body cavity searches with and without a warrant;

 b. provisions for privacy and search by gender, or gender identity/expression and gender expression;

 c. provisions for circumstances involving juveniles; and

 d. reporting requirements.



Strip and body cavity searches are sometimes necessary for agency safety and security or to seize evidence of criminal activity. These searches, however, are highly intrusive and should be conducted within the limits of legal authority, out of public view, and with due regard for human dignity. Some body cavity searches may require special hygienic procedures and qualified medical personnel to conduct the search. Other factors to consider include age, gender, gender identity, gender expression and mental capacity of subject to be searched, as well as the environment in which the search occurs. The procedures should guide agency personnel in conducting strip and body cavity searches that will maximize safety, seize necessary evidence, and be considered reasonable by applicable judicial authority.  (M M M M) (LE1)


Glossary Terms

Gender:  The state of being male or female in relation to the social and cultural roles that are considered appropriate for men and women.


Gender identity:  One’s innermost concept of self as male, female, a blend of both or neither – how individuals perceive themselves and what they call themselves. One's gender identity can be the same or different from their sex assigned at birth.


Gender expression:  External appearance of one's gender identity, usually expressed through behavior, clothing, body characteristics or voice, and which may or may not conform to socially defined behaviors and characteristics typically associated with being either masculine or feminine. Others perceive a person’s gender through these attributes.

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