Appeals court overturns stop-and-frisk gun conviction

June 27, 2012 3:19:02 AM PDT
A New York state appellate court has overturned the conviction of a teenager who was caught carrying a gun.

The sharply divided court ruled, three to two, that an NYPD officer who found the gun during a stop-and-frisk encounter did not have sufficient cause to search the 14-year-old boy.

According to the majority opinion, the Family Court judge was wrong when he ruled the arresting officer could perform a search "under the guise that the officer claimed to perceive some threat to his personal safety."

A dissenting opinion argued that an officer fearing for his safety should be able frisk a suspect, and that the ruling inappropriately tried to turn the case "into a referendum on the NYPD's policing tactics."

The city law department plans to appeal the decision to the Court of Appeals, the state's highest court.

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