Memphis PD Under Fire for Holding People Without Probable Cause

It’s been the mantra of Memphis law enforcement: “To crack the case, do it in the First 48.”

But, what’s been a common procedure utilized by the Memphis Police Department, the practice of holding people in jail for 48 hours without probable cause, is under fire again after the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals called into question its Constitutionality last week.

Defense attorney Michael Scholl adds, “You have higher courts saying, ‘Look this flies in the face of our Constitution. This is not correct.’ But, there you have a department or total entity saying, ‘no, we’re not really concerned with that. We’re gonna do what we want to do and continue to exercise the policy.'”

In a report delivered to the Shelby County Commission it was noted judicial commissioners had signed off on nearly one-thousand 48-hour hold requests from the local law enforcement last year alone.

But, while the practice might be on a “legal hold,” the backlash may have only just begun.


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