In south carolina, can school resource officers give 16 year old minor a breathalyzer without parent present or concent to?

Child consumed alcohol before school out
of a thermos then added water to the
thermos. Someone told on her and the RO
took the thermos into evidence saying it
had residue. Gave my child a
breathalyzer and then contacted me. She
was not expelled only suspended 10 days.

Asked on September 12, 2017 under Criminal Law, South Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, they can do this. Schools are "in loco parentis" during the school day for their minor students: that is, in the parent's absence (i.e. since the parents are not there at school), they have parental-like authority, including over criminal and security matters. The school (though its agents and employees) can consent to searches, including breathalyzers, of students, the same way the parents could if the student were at home.

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