- Education Week (blog): Justices Decline to Review Case Involving Strip Search of 4-Year-Old at School
- Observer: NJ Supreme Court Will Determine Whether Cops Can Force You to Unlock Your Mobile Device
- ND: Def’s arrangement for another to take possession of his package showed his standing
- CA5: GFE wasn’t raised or litigated below so it’s not considered on appeal
- GA: Lack of a particularized motion to suppress didn’t preserve 4A claim for appeal
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Fourth Amendment cases,
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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: Qualified immunity
Defendant’s cell phone was lawfully seized but apparently forgotten about. In preparation of the case, an assistant prosecutor found out about it and sought a search warrant, 536 days after seizure. The delay was unreasonable, and the phone’s contents are … Continue reading
“The totality of the circumstances at the time of the arrest, as described above, were sufficient for Svajgl to believe that Nader had committed or was committing the offense of possessing child pornography.” Arguable probable cause is all that’s required … Continue reading
Officers came to plaintiff’s home for a knock-and-talk, and he went out the back with a gun in hand. One officer pursued him, and he ended up racking and pointing the gun and getting shot. The officers get qualified immunity … Continue reading
CA11: § 1983 malicious prosecution claim defeated by PC even though exonerating information omitted from arrest affidavit
Plaintiff police officers’ false arrest claim fails on qualified immunity. Even though allegedly exonerating information was omitted from the arrest affidavits, and the criminal case was dropped by the state’s attorney, it wasn’t enough to undermine the probable cause that … Continue reading
Officers who visited plaintiff in his hospital room he shared with another were sued for allegedly violating his reasonable expectation of privacy. There is no clear controlling authority, and the officers get qualified immunity [and the issue goes undecided]. Bonds … Continue reading
Plaintiff is an inmate in prison who was ordered to give a blood test when prison officials decided he wasn’t acting right and might be high. His suit over the prison’s forced blood draw is barred by qualified immunity. Holm … Continue reading
Plaintiff was subjected to a parole search, and he contended New York law applied rather than Samson et al. The officer gets qualified immunity on the question because it appears Samson should but we don’t even need to resolve it. … Continue reading
This is a suit over a 2008 search at USVI port of the plaintiff’s cabin on the Adventure of the Seas cruise ship. Plaintiff was in the Treasury Enforcement Communications System (TECS), a CBP database for intel, from prior travels … Continue reading
D.N.M.: Pocket and backpack search and patdown of 21 students at school for stolen money was with RS so officer gets QI
A school security officer gets qualified immunity for a patdown search of 21 students in a class for allegedly stolen money because there was reasonable suspicion as to all 21. Woods v. Rio Rancho Pub. Schs, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS … Continue reading
CA7: Franks is settled law, and false statements to procure arrest warrant denied qualified immunity
Plaintiff stated a Franks claim that his arrest warrant was based on false evidence and omitted exculpatory evidence. The officer is denied qualified immunity. Rainsberger v. Benner, 17 2521 (7th Cir. Jan. 15, 2019):
SCOTUS: In QI in excessive force cases, a “clearly established” right needs to be defined with specificity
In confronting qualified immunity in excessive force cases, a “clearly established” right needs to be defined with specificity. City of Escondido v. Emmons, 17-1660 (U.S. Jan. 7, 2019) (per curiam) [pdf at 27]:
A state case worker who photographed a partially unclothed child at school gets qualified immunity for a special needs search of the child. No SCOTUS or circuit case says that the special needs doctrine does or does not apply here. … Continue reading