Suspension for Holding Pot Isn’t a Federal Matter

     CHICAGO (CN) – Indiana University can suspend a student for one year after school officials found marijuana in his dorm room, the 7th Circuit ruled.



     Zachary Medlock, a full-time student, lived in a single room dormitory known as the Willkie Residence Center. On March 9, two resident assistants conducted a routine safety inspection of Medlock’s room while he was not present and discovered marijuana in plain sight.
     The RAs notified campus police, who seized the drugs. Medlock was subsequently suspended for one year and subjected to criminal charges.
     After the school dismissed Medlock’s appeal, the student demanded a federal injunction against the Indiana University Board of Trustees.
     U.S. District Judge Tanya Pratt summarily dismissed the suit, rejecting both Medlock’s Fourth Amendment and procedural due process claims.
     Medlock appealed, but the 7th Circuit refused to address the merits of his case.
     Noting that oral arguments were heard on Feb. 21, 2012, too late to enroll in classes for the 2012 spring semester, the court booted the case as moot.
     “Even if we were to decide that Medlock’s constitutional rights had been violated, a preliminary injunction would do him no good,” Judge William Bauer wrote for a three-member panel. “There is simply nothing left to enjoin. And there are no other issues before us on this appeal – e.g., no request for damages or declaratory relief.”

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