Idea to allow cooler searches at Clackamas County parks - KPTV - FOX 12

Should police be able to search coolers for alcohol at county parks?

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Clackamas County Commissioners could soon consider a proposal that would allow authorities to search coolers for alcohol at county parks.

It's an idea that's being talking about as a way to curb alcohol use at county parks, a county spokesman said. The idea is in its very early stages, the spokesman added.

The idea was brought up Tuesday as part of a collaborative presentation between the parks department and the sheriff's office, the spokesman said.

Since 2010, alcohol use has been banned at county parks except for visitors who've obtained a permit. The ban was put in place permanently that year after an incident in July 2007 involving thousands of people at Barton and Carver County parks.

A county spokesman said the idea to allow cooler searches would apply to day use only. There are different rules that apply to those with permits, he said.

Several visitors at Hebb Park told FOX 12 on Tuesday night that allowing cooler searches would be a good idea.

"I think they should be able to check coolers if they feel like something could be in there or probably cause," said Bryan Franzen. "But at the same time, it's invading people's personal space. I mean, you've got the right to be able to have your own stuff with you."

No ordinance has been drafted yet, a county spokesman said. Commissioners won't even consider the idea until a draft has been written, he added. A draft could be written relatively soon, he added.

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