Lawyer wants to sue Rock Bridge High School for prom sobriety checks

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COLUMBIA - A lawyer wants to sue Rock Bridge High School after its announcement of sobriety checking all students attending prom.

Mid-Missouri Civil Liberties Association president Dan Viets held a meeting Saturday at Rock Bridge Christian Church with other lawyers to decide if they want to go through with a lawsuit.

"We think that that is a violation of Fourth Amendment rights," Viets said. "I'm not sure the courts will agree, but there is at least an argument to be made that that is an unreasonable search."

The Fourth Amendment prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. According to Viets, courts have said breath tests or any chemical test of a person's body is a search.

"When students are entering a high school prom and have done nothing to suggest they had anything to drink or done anything wrong, then forcing them to undergo a search is unreasonable," Viets said.

Columbia Public Schools administrators announced on Monday all four high school proms will include a breathalyzer test.

According to previous reporting, Principal Jennifer Rukstad said, "The students actually suggest that the breathalyzers might make a difference."

Viets said if members of the Mid-Missouri Civil Liberties Association think they have a strong enough case, they will seek an injunction on the use of breathalyzers at Rock Bridge High School until the issue can be completely litigated.

Rock Bridge's prom is set for April 28th.

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