07/19/2019: "Senator Murray Works To Curtail Warrantless Vehicle Checkpoint Stops"
Amid increasing scrutiny of immigration officials inhumane treatment of children and families, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) reintroduced legislation to strengthen privacy protections in Washington state and all other border states by limiting the unreasonably large “border zone.”
“No person deserves to be hassled or detained simply because they live or travel near our borders -not in Washington state, or any state in our country,” Senator Murray said. “This bill would protect the rights of families and communities who happen to live or travel near our national borders, while still allowing federal law enforcement to do their jobs and keep our borders safe."
Senator Murray’s legislation would reduce the “border zone” from 100 miles to 25 miles in which Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials may conduct vehicle stops and searches, and from 25 miles to 10 miles for DHS access to private property.
Currently, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers have broad legal authority to stop vehicles without a warrant or even reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing within 100 miles of the border, and to search private land within 25 miles of the border.
The 100-mile “border zone” covers a geographic area that includes nearly two-thirds of the population of the United States, including all or virtually all of Florida, Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Delaware, as well as non-border cities such as Spokane, WA and Portland, OR.