O'Connor v. Ortega - Significance, Search And Seizure Without Authorization, What Is The Right To Privacy In The Workplace?
Dennis M. O'Connor
Mango J. Ortega
Hospital officials of Napa State Hospital had reasonable cause to enter and search an employee's private office. Officials were attempting to secure any state property in Mango J. Ortega's office while he was being investigated for mismanagement of his department and for sexual harassment charges. This search did not violate the employee's Fourth Amendment rights.
Chief Lawyer for Petitioner
Jeffrey T. Miller
Chief Lawyer for Respondent
Joel I. Klein
Justices for the Court
Sandra Day O'Connor (writing for the Court), Lewis F. Powell, Jr., William H. Rehnquist, Antonin Scalia, Byron R. White
Harry A. Blackmun, William J. Brennan, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, John Paul Stevens
Date of Decision
31 March 1987
The Court held that the search of Ortega's office by Hospital officials did not violate Ortega's Fourth Amendment right to privacy. The realities of the public workplace held to the standard that "reasonableness" was just cause for intrusion in an office. The case was remanded to the lower courts for further review and action.
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- New Jersey v. T.L.O., 469 U.S. 325 (1985).
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