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Under a department policy implemented in 2004, officers are allowed to search people if they have a "reasonable suspicion" to believe the people are hiding something illegal, such as drugs, or would destroy or ingest it unless it was immediately recovered.
But attorneys for a group of men claiming they were wrongfully searched said the policy is unconstitutional because the standard is lower than that of probable cause, the standard police must meet before arresting someone.
U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel agreed.
The judge also found that an earlier version of the policy, enacted in 1998, was unconstitutional because it didn't require that more invasive body-cavity searches be conducted by medical personnel.