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Ex-police official: I know unlawful detention when I see it

The above headline for today's blog entry might reasonably have a few extra words tacked on to it, namely these: especially when it happens to me.

Law enforcers typically know a thing or two about the legalities surrounding detention because, well, they detain people.

And it is logical that when a seasoned police official is the individual sitting in a chair in a detention room, due reflection quickly centers on the so-called "reasonableness" of his confinement.

Because that is a well-ingrained standard of American law governing the detention and questioning of individuals in Tennessee and nationally by police and other enforcement investigors.

Hassan Aden recently found himself sitting in such a chair in a detention area of JFK International Airport in New York. He was told by a customs officer to "take a walk" after his arrival from Paris, where he had helped his mother celebrate her birthday.

Aden is an ex-police chief and duly appreciative of customs agents and the work they do.

Provided, again, that they are reasonable and act pursuant to constitutional dictates.

That wasn't the case regarding his treatment, he contends. He was told that he needed to be checked out because his name was the same as that used as an alias by a targeted criminal suspect. He maintains that a check of his documents and travel history would have quickly established his legitimacy; he is a frequent global business traveler.

Aden figures that approximately five minutes would have sufficed.

He spent 90 minutes confined.

And that made for a decidedly angry ex-law enforcement official, with Aden claiming that the agent who detained and questioned him had an "ignorance of the law and the Fourth Amendment."

Although that is hardly a singular observation directed toward police behavior by an individual in the United States, it is certainly rendered a bit more notable by its author's status as a long-time enforcement insider.

Issues persistently arise across the country regarding police conduct and the parameters of legality during citizen stops, detentions, search-and-seizure incidents and related matters.

Any Tennessee resident with questions or concerns regarding any aspect of a police stop or detention might reasonably want to contact a proven Nashville criminal defense attorney as soon as possible following such interaction.

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