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San Gabriel Valley Digest

Covina : Strip-Search Suit Settled

March 05, 1987

A lawsuit involving the Police Department's strip-search of a 12-year-old boy in 1983 has been settled for $41,000, lawyers for both sides said.

The parents of Earl Walter Doyle, one of three boys strip-searched after being arrested on suspicion of burglary, filed a $5-million lawsuit in 1985 in federal District Court charging police harassment and retaliation. A similar lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, but will be dropped as part of the settlement reached last week.

The strip-search attracted national attention from the news media, including the "60 Minutes" television program, and generated support for state legislation limiting police strip-searches. The new state law, which took effect in 1984, forced the Covina Police Department to change its strip-search policy.

The charges against Doyle and two friends, Jerry Perez and Raymond Moore, also juveniles at the time, were dismissed.

The controversy was cited by former police Chief Michael O'Day as one reason he resigned in 1984.

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