Australian Capital Territory Current Acts

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CRIMES ACT 1900 - SECT 228

Rules for conduct of strip search

    (1)     A strip search—

        (a)     shall be conducted in a private area; and

        (b)     subject to subsection (6), shall be conducted by a police officer who is of the same sex as the person being searched; and

        (c)     subject to subsections (3) and (4), shall not be conducted in the presence or view of a person who is of the opposite sex to the person being searched; and

        (d)     shall not be conducted in the presence or view of a person whose presence is not necessary for the purposes of the search; and

        (e)     shall not be conducted on a person who is under 10; and

        (f)     if the person being searched is at least 10 but under 18, or is incapable of managing his or her affairs—

              (i)     may only be conducted if the person has been arrested and charged or if a court orders that it be conducted; and

              (ii)     shall be conducted in the presence of a parent or guardian of the person being searched or, if that is not acceptable to the person, in the presence of another person (other than a police officer) who is capable of representing the interests of the person and who, as far as is practicable in the circumstances, is acceptable to the person; and

        (g)     shall not involve a search of a person's body cavities; and

        (h)     shall not involve the removal of more garments than the police officer conducting the search believes on reasonable grounds to be necessary to determine whether the person has in his or her possession the item searched for or to establish the person's involvement in the offence; and

              (i)     shall not involve more visual inspection than the police officer believes on reasonable grounds to be necessary to establish the person's involvement in the offence.

    (2)     In deciding whether to make an order referred to in subsection (1) (f), the court shall have regard to—

        (a)     the seriousness of the offence; and

        (b)     the age or any disability of the person; and

        (c)     any other matters the court thinks fit.

    (3)     A strip search may be conducted in the presence of a medical practitioner of the opposite sex to the person searched if a medical practitioner of the same sex as the person being searched is not available within a reasonable time.

    (4)     Subsection (1) (c) does not apply to a parent, guardian or personal representative of the person being searched if the person being searched has no objection to the person being present.

    (5)     If any of a person's garments are seized as a result of a strip search, the person shall be provided with adequate clothing.

    (6)     If a strip search of a person is to be conducted and no police officer of the same sex as that person is available to conduct the search, any other person—

        (a)     of the same sex as the person to be searched; and

        (b)     who has been requested to conduct the search by a police officer;

may conduct the search.

    (7)     No action or proceeding, civil or criminal, lies against a person who conducts a strip search under a request under subsection (6) in respect of a strip search that would have been lawful if conducted by a police officer.



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