A New York appeals court has reversed the conviction of a 14-year-old boy arrested after a street search turned up a weapon in his backpack.
The court ruled 3-2 on Tuesday that the officers were relying on a hunch that something illegal was inside the teen's bag during a stop in 2010 in West Harlem. The court said the officers needed something more concrete to justify searching the backpack.
A 14-year-old boy was stopped by officers after he was seen glancing around and putting something white from his rear waistband into his backpack. They stopped the teen, asked him where he was going, searched the backpack and found a gun, ammunition and $963. The teen had been sentenced to probation
The ruling came a week after another teen’s conviction was overturned. A different set of judges from the same court ruled that police who stopped and frisked a teen in the Bronx had no reasonable suspicion. The boy was arrested after putting a black object that turned out to be a gun into his pocket.
The city law department says it will appeal both cases.