Mass. High Court: State's Use Of Dogs In Prisons To Search Visitors Violated Regulatory Process
Massachusetts' highest court says the state's Department of Correction overstepped its authority when it began using dogs to search prison visitors for drugs without giving the public a chance to weigh in.
The Supreme Judicial Court ruled Thursday that the department should have followed a regulatory process that allows interested parties an opportunity to present their views.
The drug-dog policy has been in place since 2013. The court said it could have a "potentially significant impact" on visitors' experience.
The court is allowing the department to continue using the dogs for a certain period while it follows the proper regulatory process.
The correction department said in a statement that it's glad the court found the drug-detection dog policy is not prohibited by its existing regulations.