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Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 27425
Experience:  Active member of the NYS bar since 1989
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My identity was hacked last week leaving me without a

Customer Question

My identity was hacked last week leaving me without a check/visa card. My boyfriend and I went out to a local bar to watch the game on Saturday. My friend came by to pick me up and take me to her house while the "boys" finished watching the game. Since I was without "money" , my boyfriend went next door and bought a bottle of liquor for me to take home. I know I'm not suppose to bring it into the bar, I put it in my purse and went to the bathroom. When I came back, the bar back had the bottle and ask me to take it to the car, I ask how he got it? He wouldn't answer, my friend said she saw him at my chair but wasn't sure what he was doing, is it legal for him to go through my purse without my permission or knowledgeable? I'm very upset! I had no intention of drinking it there, nor did I bring it in.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Zoey, JD replied 1 year ago.


The right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure involves government searches. The Constitution does not apply to a bartender and would not protect you.

I can think of perfectly legitimate reasons for a bartender to look into what he may have believed to be an abandoned purse. You weren't there to give or deny consent and aren't even sure how he got the bottle you shouldn't have had in your purse at all. So about the only thing you can do is complain to the management.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
First, I did say that I shouldn't have had it, I was using the rest room before leaving- I was on my way out. Secondly, it was at a table with six other people, so the purse couldn't be assumed as abandoned, lastly, he did not admit but his manager did. There were other people there to deny/consent, he chose to hide his actions. So I will assume that I have no rights to privacy in a public area?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My purse was on the back of my chair and under my coat
Expert:  Zoey, JD replied 1 year ago.

Again, your right against unreasonable search and seizure has only to do with government searches.

The bartender may have acted improperly -- I can't tell because despite the fact that you say there were 6 people at the table, nobody saw how he knew about or got that bottle -- but you don't have a suit here. For one thing, you didn't sustain any damages. Nobody robbed you, for example. In fact, you were even given back the contraband you should not have had in the bar in the first place.

I know that you feel bad about this, but you're not in the right either in this situation. Write a complaint to the management, as that's about all you've got here.