Improper strip search = no gun charge

An Ontario judge has stayed all charges against a 13-year-old boy who allegedly brought a gun to his elementary school because he was improperly strip-searched at the police station.

The Toronto boy, who can't be identified because of his age, was 12 when teachers found a gun and ammunition in his backpack after a fight at school.

At the police station, officers made the boy remove all of his clothing and they performed a visual inspection.

Proper procedure for a strip search is for the accused to remove their clothing one piece at a time so it can be examined then put back on, never leaving the accused fully naked.

The judge ruled today that this violated the boy's charter right to not be subjected to an unreasonable search.

Though the stay means the case won't go to trial, the judge ended his decision with some words of warning to the boy about guns, saying, "They do not make you cool. They do not make you powerful. They do not make you into a tough guy."

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