August 10, 2011
A judge says he will take a couple of weeks to decide whether to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a man who was arrested after stripping to his shorts at a Richmond International Airport checkpoint to protest security procedures.
U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson in Richmond heard arguments on a motion to dismiss Wednesday. He tentatively set the case for trial Jan. 18.
Twenty-one-year-old Aaron Tobey of Charlottesville was detained Dec. 30 after partially disrobing to display the text of the Constitution's Fourth Amendment written on his chest. Tobey claims airport security procedures violate the amendment's protections against unreasonable search and seizure.
A disorderly conduct charge
ultimately was dropped, but Tobey claims in his lawsuit against federal officials and airport police that the arrest violated his constitutional rights.
Attorneys for The Rutherford Institute filed a civil rights lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on behalf of Tobey.
Defendants include Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and John Pistole, administrator of the Transportation Security Administration. They argue that they are immune from such lawsuits.