The Supreme Court Just Ruled In Favor Of The Police State, And Sonia Sotomayor Is Not Having It

In a powerful dissent to a Supreme Court ruling that took an expansive view of the limits the Constitution places on police misconduct, Justice Sonia Sotomayor on Monday seemed to address the people most affected by unfortunate encounters with the police — black and brown Americans.

“Do not be soothed by the opinion’s technical language: This case allows the police to stop you on the street, demand your identification, and check it for outstanding traffic warrants—even if you are doing nothing wrong,” Sotomayor wrote in the opening paragraph of her response to Utah v. Strieff, which the court decided in a 5-3 vote.

The case had asked the justices to decide whether evidence uncovered during an unlawful police stop could be used against the person in possession of it — a question that requires an interpretation of the Fourth Amendment‘s prohibitions against unreasonable searches and seizures.

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