Cops digging used tampons out of the trash to test for drugs? WTF?!

Reading this only goes to show what pathetic lows law enforcement will go to in order to “win” the “War on Drugs”. In this case, digging used tampons out of the trash, without a warrant no less.

Have they no sense of decency? What the fuck are we coming to, where cops are snooping in the trash of OTHER cops, digging for used tampons to test for drugs and semen? Does any sense of privacy exist, or must even such a basic thing as this be forfeited in order to punish people for ingesting non government approved substances?

If justice prevails, this had better get excluded from evidence, and the case dismissed. Outrages like this should not be tolerated in a free society.

Um… ewww.

The gross factor is getting in the way of anything else right now. Yucky

She leaves her used tampons in the garbage bin? ewwwww.

Her residence probably has bad plumbing.

What really shocked me was that they tested for semen… why?! That has nothing at all to do with the drug allegations.

Actually, I’ve never flushed tampons-they CAN clog the toilet.

The presence of semen would indicate an alternative explanation for the presence of drug residue. Actually, if they hadn’t tested for the presence of semen the whole operation would have been a waste.

Personally, I’m betting that a smart lawyer will be able to think of other ways that an object taken from a trashcan on a public sidewalk might have been contaminated.

I don’t see why people are upset with this. Civilians did not do it to the police. The police are doing it to each other in this case. So, I guess the ones who pulled the trash have no problem with their fellow officers doing it to them. A perfect case of “Why worry if you have nothing to hide?”

Would the police ever plant evidence on a fellow officer? On a civilian? Nah… I say good for the police as long as this is confined to the police. But wait, they do it to civilians too? Hummm well, so what, the new standard in this country is “guilty until proven innocent.” as I understand all that seems to be going down…

:: the above was all done with tongue in cheek and with sarcasm running at 100%. :::

But I really love it that they do it to their own also.

Remember, anything to get drugs off the street and to save the children is okay…

WRT not having a warrant, I believe the SCOTUS ruled about ten years ago that this kind of search didn’t require one. The argument was that by throwing something away, you’ve declared that it’s not your private property anymore, so anyone can take it without asking for your consent. I’ve been out of the country for a while so I don’t know if their ruling was later reversed or amended.

I’m curious as to whether this gives police the right to open permanent trash containers (which you’re not throwing away) in order to get the goodies and protect the children.

Women hold onto their used tampons long enough to throw them into a garbage bin on the street? Now that’s bizarre (and more than a little bit suspicious - surely there must have been a bin wherever she changed her tampon).

Did you bother to read the quote? They pulled it out of her garbage bin, outside of her house.

Can anyone advise me what the laws are like in the US for purity of evidence? For example, if the prosecution are arguing that the evidence had been disposed of in a public bin, surely the obvious rebuttal is that there’s no evidence this item hasn’t been contaminated in some way.

Also, and I really don’t claim to know much on the subject, I thought binning them was the environmentally conscious way of disposing of them?

Every woman should know that she is not supposed to flush used tampons down the toilet. She can flush the applicator (if it is one of those paper kinds, like what Kotex uses) but that’s it.

So bearing this in mind, that gives an incredibly easy way for the police to snoop on a womans most personal details whenever they like.

I really hope this gets thrown out with a vengance.

If murder weapons discarded in rubbish bins can be admissible in a court of law, then presumably so can a tampon. I’m guessing the DNA check is to prove conclusively that the tampon belonged to the woman in question; if the DNA present in the blood is hers, then so too are any drugs present in the blood.

What I’m curious about is how they’re going to prove they had “probable cause” in order to justify searching the bin without a warrant in the first place.

And yes, I’m aware that flushing tampons can create plumbing problems - but who wants to leave used tampons in the rubbish bin for a week until the garbage is collected (especially in summer - eeeew)?

Seing as you live in a city with beaches, who wants to swim past a used tampon?

Since picking up a suspect’s used cigarette butt for DNA testing is legal (I haven’t a cite on hand but I did see a segment on it on one of those forensics shows on TLC), I’m not surprised that digging a tampon out of the trash is too.

I think the fact that it allows women to be singled out for invasion is a big issue. It’s harder to spy on men in a similar manner, since to put it bluntly they don’t leak blood on a regular basis like women do.

Until the trash actually gets taken away by the duly authorized Sanitation Engineers, the trash is YOURS. If some stranger started digging through your trash, then you’d be perfectly within your rights to order him to stop.

I seem to recall that used condoms have been treated as evidence in the past, I’m not sure that either tampons or condoms should be excluded from being admissible evidence purely on the basis of their being retrieved from a garbage bin (what if it had been a weapon or some other piece of physical evidence retrieved under the same circumstances - a used syringe containing amphetamines?). It’s the speculative nature of the search which is the worry. No warrant, no probable cause to precede the search - I would have thought that puts the evidence firmly in the class of having been obtained by unreasonable search and seizure.

No. 486 U.S. 35, 108 S.Ct. 1625

I wouldn’t want to swim anywhere the council pumped raw sewage out to sea.