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"If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. It isn't, and they don't."
“I am still learning.”
—Domenico Giuntalodi (but misattributed to Michelangelo Buonarroti (common phrase throughout 1500's)).
"Love work; hate mastery over others; and avoid intimacy with the government."
—Shemaya, in the Thalmud
"A system of law that not only makes certain conduct criminal, but also lays down rules for the conduct of the authorities, often becomes complex in its application to individual cases, and will from time to time produce imperfect results, especially if one's attention is confined to the particular case at bar. Some criminals do go free because of the necessity of keeping government and its servants in their place. That is one of the costs of having and enforcing a Bill of Rights. This country is built on the assumption that the cost is worth paying, and that in the long run we are all both freer and safer if the Constitution is strictly enforced."
—Williams v. Nix, 700 F. 2d 1164, 1173 (8th Cir. 1983) (Richard Sheppard Arnold, J.), rev'd Nix v. Williams, 467 US. 431 (1984).
"The criminal goes free, if he must, but it is the law that sets him free. Nothing can destroy a government more quickly than its failure to observe its own laws, or worse, its disregard of the charter of its own existence."
—Mapp v. Ohio, 367 U.S. 643, 659 (1961).
"Any costs the exclusionary rule are costs imposed directly by the Fourth Amendment."
—Yale Kamisar, 86 Mich.L.Rev. 1, 36 n. 151 (1987).
"There have been powerful hydraulic pressures throughout our history that bear heavily on the Court to water down constitutional guarantees and give the police the upper hand. That hydraulic pressure has probably never been greater than it is today."
— Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 39 (1968) (Douglas, J., dissenting).
"The great end, for which men entered into society, was to secure their property."
—Entick v. Carrington, 19 How.St.Tr. 1029, 1066, 95 Eng. Rep. 807 (C.P. 1765)
"It is a fair summary of history to say that the safeguards of liberty have frequently been forged in controversies involving not very nice people. And so, while we are concerned here with a shabby defrauder, we must deal with his case in the context of what are really the great themes expressed by the Fourth Amendment."
—United States v. Rabinowitz, 339 U.S. 56, 69 (1950) (Frankfurter, J., dissenting)
"The course of true law pertaining to searches and seizures, as enunciated here, has not–to put it mildly–run smooth."
—Chapman v. United States, 365 U.S. 610, 618 (1961) (Frankfurter, J., concurring).
"A search is a search, even if it happens to disclose nothing but the bottom of a turntable."
—Arizona v. Hicks, 480 U.S. 321, 325 (1987)
"For the Fourth Amendment protects people, not places. What a person knowingly exposes to the public, even in his own home or office, is not a subject of Fourth Amendment protection. ... But what he seeks to preserve as private, even in an area accessible to the public, may be constitutionally protected."
—Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347, 351 (1967)
“Experience should teach us to be most on guard to protect liberty when the Government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.”
—United States v. Olmstead, 277 U.S. 438, 479 (1925) (Brandeis, J., dissenting)
“Liberty—the freedom from unwarranted intrusion by government—is as easily lost through insistent nibbles by government officials who seek to do their jobs too well as by those whose purpose it is to oppress; the piranha can be as deadly as the shark.”
—United States v. $124,570, 873 F.2d 1240, 1246 (9th Cir. 1989)
"You can't always get what you want / But if you try sometimes / You just might find / You get what you need."
—Mick Jagger & Keith Richards
"In Germany, they first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Catholic. Then they came for me–and by that time there was nobody left to speak up."
—Martin Niemöller (1945) [he served seven years in a concentration camp]
“You know, most men would get discouraged by now. Fortunately for you, I am not most men!”"The point of the Fourth Amendment, which often is not grasped by zealous officers, is not that it denies law enforcement the support of the usual inferences which reasonable men draw from evidence. Its protection consists in requiring that those inferences be drawn by a neutral and detached magistrate instead of being judged by the officer engaged in the often competitive enterprise of ferreting out crime."
---Pepé Le Pew
—Johnson v. United States, 333 U.S. 10, 13-14 (1948)
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Category Archives: Reasonable suspicion
NE: Def was stopped on street bloody and highly agitated; he was detained and then officers were going to transport him away from area but not arrest him; patdown validly produced brass knuckles
Police responded to a call and found defendant on the street, and he’d apparently been involved in an altercation. He and his hands were bloody and he was highly agitated. Ultimately, the police handcuffed him until he calmed down while … Continue reading
Defendant filed a motion to suppress and that put the state on notice that it had to prove the ordinance under which it prosecutes. The state failed to prove it up, but its backup argument was that the officer relied … Continue reading
An investigative detention at gunpoint isn’t per se unreasonable. Here, defendant was told to stay in the car and he didn’t, and the officer justifiably drew his weapon for self-protection. This wasn’t unreasonable under the circumstances. “In addition, over the … Continue reading
The government didn’t have to show that defendant posed a potential significant danger to officers; just a possible danger based on objective observations and knowledge. It satisfied that here even though the offense (flashing a weapon) happened earlier in the … Continue reading
Officers merely used the CI to locate the defendant, not for the probable cause to search, so no reason to disclose the CI is shown. State v. Heard, 2018 N.C. App. LEXIS 828 (Aug. 24, 2018). The dash cam video … Continue reading
A stop with guns drawn without reasonable suspicion was unreasonable. Summary by the court: “A Superior Court judge erred in denying the criminal defendant’s pretrial motion to suppress a firearm seized by police after a lawful stop of the vehicle … Continue reading
Listening live to wiretap, one officer contacted another for a stop based on a drug transaction occurring. This was reasonable suspicion even if there was no reasonable suspicion from a traffic stop. United States v. Jenkins, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS … Continue reading
DE: Def counsel was not ineffective for not arguing obvious typo on date justified suppression because it didn’t
The search warrant affidavit said August 3, 2015, but August was typed and the 3 written in. It’s clear from all the testimony that it was issued September 3, and the “August” wasn’t corrected. Therefore, defense counsel wasn’t ineffective for … Continue reading
S.D.N.Y.: Franks challenge that SW general allegation about sex traffickers doesn’t apply to def isn’t false at this stage
Defendant is alleged to be involved in a sex trafficking operation that spanned nearly 20 years. His Franks motion is denied. One of the things he mentions was that he wasn’t involved with the Bloods in a long time, but … Continue reading
D.Mont.: RS for stop near the border when driving appeared evasive; on stop there were furtive movements
The court finds reasonable suspicion for defendant’s stop near the Canadian border. The officer was following but without blue lights on, and the car was attempting to evade the officer by driving fast on a poorly maintained road. On the … Continue reading
Defendant was validly stopped under Terry, but the search of his backpack was unreasonable and amounted to a virtual search incident to arrest. “But the cases cited by the government, including United States v. Holmes, indicate precisely the opposite. Absent … Continue reading
The CI was working off his own charges. The CI had to make several tries to make a deal with defendant, and, when it happened, there was advance planning related by the CI. They also were talking on a cell … Continue reading