Hospital Pays $1.1M to Settle Body Cavity Search Lawsuit

Border patrol agents requested the search by the University Medical Center of El Paso after a previous search turned up nothing

A woman has been paid $1.1 million by the University Medical Center of El Paso and ER doctors for their role in conducting body cavity searches on her.

Hospital staff conducted the searches of the 54-year-old plaintiff without a warrant at the request of U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) agents, reports KOB. This was done despite the fact that CBP had already frisked and strip-searched her and found nothing. Agents focused on her just after she walked over the border from Mexico due to a K-9 alerting them that she might have been in possession of drugs.

After the initial search, CBP agents transported the woman to the hospital where doctors performed an X-ray of her, as well as a spectrum exam, rectal exam, vaginal exam and CT exam. They also observed her bowel movements.

The woman was released six hours later. No charges were filed.

In addition to paying the woman $1.1 million, the University Medical Center of El Paso will also review with the American Civil Liberties Union its policies on police searches.

Photo via Wikimedia

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