A U.S. appeals court says a California county cannot routinely examine the genitals of children removed from homes on suspicion of abuse unless it obtains a court order or consent from their parents.
A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled unanimously Wednesday that the examinations performed in by San Diego County even in cases in which sexual abuse was not suspected violated the U.S. Constitution.
The ruling came in a lawsuit filed by two parents who were not notified when their four children were examined after the county removed them from their home in 2010.
County officials argued that the exams were intended to assess the children's health.
Attorney David Brodie with the San Diego County counsel's office did not immediately return a message Wednesday.