Written Assignment 4
Trixee is a dancer at Showtime Gentlemen’s Club. The Club has available several lockers in the dressing room which may be leased by its dancers for $20.00 per week. Dancers are permitted to place padlocks on their leased lockers to safeguard and privatize the contents of their lockers. Showtime Gentlemen’s Club has in place a policy which requires 24-hours notice for locker inspections by management. When Trixee hired in at Showtime Gentlemen’s Club in 2003, she leased Locker #10.
Last week, Officer Fletcher of the State Police Office went into the Club, while Trixee was on site, after receiving an anonymous tip that an unidentified person had narcotics in a locker at the Club. Officer Fletcher told Trixee’s manager, Bruce, about the information he had received and asked him if he would perform a locker search. Wishing to cooperate with Officer Fletcher, Bruce agreed to facilitate a search of all of the dancers’ lockers.
As Trixee came off the stage and into the dressing room, she encountered Bruce and Officer Fletcher standing near her locker. Bruce ordered her to unlock her locker. Trixee did so, at which time, Bruce began searching through the contents of her locker and her purse. Bruce found methamphetamines in her purse.
Trixee believes Showtime Gentlemen’s Club has invaded her privacy rights by sifting through the contents of her locker and her purse. She also believes that the inspection violates the Fourth Amendment’s “search and seizure” provisions. For this Written Assignment, you may assume that even though Trixee is a private-sector employee, the Fourth Amendment applies to Officer Fletcher’s conduct.
Is Trixee correct? What are her best arguments to support her claims under common law breach of privacy and under the United States Constitution?
All Written Assignments apply the IRAC method.
The IRAC method (Issue, Rule, Analysis and Conclusion). This method is taught in first year law school. Apply this method because it forces you to “break down” each step of your analysis. As a result, you will earn higher scores because you will be able to demonstrate that you understand the “issue” – the question that needs to be resolved, that you know the laws and rules that are important for resolving the issue, that you are able to apply those laws and rules to the facts, and that you have a good reason for coming to your conclusion.
First, identify the issue or the question before you, then state the rules or laws that apply to the issue. Next apply the facts to the rules. This is your “analysis.” Lastly, state your conclusion(s) based on your analysis. IRAC will guide you towards well–reasoned opinions and conclusions.
Written Assignments are expected to conform to basic college–level standards of mechanics and presentation. This means, you are expected to demonstrate appropriate content, organization and proper grammar and punctuation. Be certain to use citations, either MLA or APA, when referencing sources such as case law, texts or articles.
Written Assignment 4
Gentlemen’s Club hired Trixee as a dancer on a contract basis. In this case, Gentlemen`s Club entered into a contract with Trixee to guide their relations. Additionally, the Club leased lockers to Dancers at $20 weekly. The dancers would keep their contents and personal things. The lockers would further be locked to ensure that the contents in the lockers were safe. Furthermore, the contract details argued that in case there were inspections in the lockers then the dancers would be notified by the management before 24hours.
Consequently, Officer Fletcher of the State Police Office got a tip-off that some of the dancers were using the lockers to hide narcotics. Officer Fletcher ordered the management to give him access to the lockers and they complied. Trixee was ordered to open her locker and the police found methamphetamines in her purse. Trixee protested about the move to search her locker arguing that the management had breached their contract and the move violated the Fourth Amendment of search and seizure provisions. In this case, Trixee was right to protests on the move to search her locker without prior notice.
Fourth Amendment: “[t]he right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
Article 1, section 10 clauses 1: The law restricts the state from passing laws or acting in any way that “impairs the obligation of contracts.”
The analysis, in this case, will be based on the contracts between Trexee and the Gentlemen`s Club as well as the violation of the Fourth Amendment in regard to searches and seizures. In this case, Trixee leased a locker on the basis that before any search is conducted the dancers would be notified within twenty-four hours (Burrows, 2004). On the contrary, the dancers were not notified since the search was impromptu thus breaching the contract. On the other hand, the search was not done in a legal and procedural way. In this case, the search was null and void since the police officer did not produce a warrant or an oath of affirmation to support the search as well as the place to be searched (Clarke, 2010). Therefore, Trexee needs to argue her case based on the contract breached and the violation of the Fourth Amendment.
The court will consider the laws and Acts violated in the course of conducting searches on the dancers’ lockers. In this case, the state though police officer hindered the contract between Trexee and the management of the club from being fulfilled. On the other hand, the due process of conducting a search and seize was not followed thus making it null and void. However, the search had a probable cause since the police officer had gathered enough intelligence and information on the availability of narcotics in Trixee`s locker. In this case, the search effective as the police and the management was in a position to search and secure illegal drugs that could be used to prosecute Trixee.
Burrows, A. S. (2004). Remedies for torts and breach of contract (Vol. 122). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Clarke, E. W. (2010). Safford Unified School District# 1 v. Redding: Why Qualified Immunity Is a poor Fit in Fourth Amendment School Search Cases. Brigham Young University Journal of Public Law, 24(2), 313-345.