Thursday, September 18, 2008

FL Judge: Baggy pants are constitutionally protected

Link

A FLORIDA judge has deemed unconstitutional a law banning baggy pants that show off the wearer's underwear.

A 17-year-old spent a night in jail last week after police arrested him for wearing low pants in Riviera Beach, Florida.

The law banning so-called "saggy pants'' was approved by city voters in March after supporters of the bill collected nearly 5,000 signatures to put the measure on the ballot.

The teen would have received a $US150 ($188) fine or community service, but he spent the night in jail due to a history of marijuana use, the Palm Beach Post newspaper said today.

"Somebody help me,'' said Palm Beach Circuit Judge Paul Moyle, before giving his decision.

"We're not talking about exposure of buttocks. No! We're talking about someone who has on pants whose underwear are apparently visible to a police officer who then makes an arrest and the basis is he's then held overnight, no bond."

"Your honour, we now have the fashion police,'' said public defender Carol Bickerstaff, who asked the law be declared "unconstitutional.''

The judge agreed with Bickerstaff immediately, reported the Post.