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School Raid Ruled Legal

August 26, 2004  | 

Although seeing officers with guns drawn frightened students, a police raid at a South Carolina high school last year did not violate civil rights, says the U.S. Justice Department.

According to records, fifteen officers entered the main hallway of Stratford High School in Goose Creek, S.C., and ordered 130 students to the floor last November. They handcuffed 18 students while school officials searched 17 book bags using a drug dog.

Police found no drugs or weapons.

In response to the raid, people marched in protest and filed lawsuits. The school’s longtime principal resigned amid national media attention.

Civil lawsuits alleging students’ constitutional rights were violated have yet to be resolved. Settlement negotiations recently broke down.

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