By ANNE GEARAN, Associated Press Writer (Tuesday November 28 2:24 PM ET)
"WASHINGTON (AP) - In a significant ruling on the use of police power, the
Supreme Court struck down random roadblocks intended for drug searches,
saying they are an unreasonable invasion of privacy under the Constitution.
Law enforcement in and of itself is not a good enough reason to stop innocent
motorists, the majority concluded Tuesday in the first major ruling of the new
``Because the checkpoint program's primary purpose is indistinguishable from the
general interest in crime control, the checkpoints contravened the Fourth
Amendment,'' which protects against unreasonable searches and seizures,
Justice Sandra Day O'Connor wrote.
The court's three most conservative justices dissented, saying the roadblocks
Indianapolis set up in high-crime neighborhoods served valuable public safety
and crime-fighting goals. Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices Antonin
Scalia and Clarence Thomas dissented."