At Whetston High School in 2013, security officials searched a student’s unattended backpack and found bullets. Police were called and a gun was found in another bag belonging to the same student. The search that lead to the initial discovery was under court scrutiny because of it potentially violating the student’s privacy. Today, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled it constitutional.
The student has been charged with possessing a deadly weapon in a school safety zone. His name is Joshua Polk and he was 18 years old at the time.
The court ruled that the search was constitutional because of the importance of keeping the student body safe and a student’s lowered expectation of privacy. Another key aspect of the ruling was that the initial search involved a backpack that Polk left behind. The court said that he abandoned his privacy rights by discarding his bag.
This case was thrown out by two lower courts and Polk even had 15 youth law groups from around the country on his side. But ultimately, the Supreme Court saw it differently.