Category Archives: Cell phones

CT: Police knowledge def’s cell phone was used to communicate with co-conspirators and victim was justification for seizure then SW

There were exigent circumstances for seizure of defendant’s cell phone incident to his arrest and probable cause for a search warrant to search it. The police developed information that the conspirators communicated with the victim by phone before the crime. … Continue reading

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FL5: Compelled production of cell phone passcode was moot point for lack of prejudice

Defendant claims she was forced to give up her cell phone passcode in violation of the Fifth Amendment would state a ground for reversal in this Florida district, but she doesn’t show what came from the phone into the trial. … Continue reading

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UT: Suspect has a 5A right to not give up unlock code to cell phone

Defendant had a Fifth Amendment right to not give up the unlock code to his cell phone. Utah declines to apply the foregone conclusion exception to the Fifth Amendment to attempt to require a suspect to give up his cell … Continue reading

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IN: Cell phone seized under SW could be searched later than the deadline in the warrant

The state had the forfeiture claimant’s cell phone in hand, but didn’t actually search it within the limit of the warrant. This was reasonable, following Wolf v. State, 266 P.3d 1169, 1174 (Idaho Ct. App. 2011). Brown v. Eaton, 2021 … Continue reading

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CA1 upholds border search of electronic devices

Alasaad v. Mayorkas, 2021 U.S. App. LEXIS 3586 (1st Cir. Feb. 9, 2021):

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CA6: SW for CP was completely lacking and GFE didn’t apply; no basis at all to search cell phone

A state search warrant was issued for alleged child porn on defendant’s computer and cell phone, and the district court suppressed for a clear lack of probable cause. The computer search required too many inferences to make probable cause. The … Continue reading

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ABAJ: Immigration lawyer sues over seizure of his cellphone at airport

ABAJ: Immigration lawyer sues over seizure of his cellphone at airport by Debra Cassens Weiss (“Texas immigration lawyer Adam A. Malik has sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for seizing and retaining his iPhone when he returned to the … Continue reading

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A.F.: Particularity and avoiding general warrants in electronic searches

“In charting how to apply the Fourth Amendment to searches of electronic devices, we glean from our reading of the case law a zone in which such searches are expansive enough to allow investigators access to places where incriminating materials … Continue reading

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WUSA9: DC residents get visits from FBI as agents track cell phones that pinged near the Capitol

WUSA9: DC residents get visits from FBI as agents track cell phones that pinged near the Capitol by Bruce Lashon (“A DC woman said an FBI agent contacted her and said investigators were reaching out to the owner of every … Continue reading

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D.Mass.: Calling def’s cell phone from a seized cell phone’s recent call log wasn’t a search

Dialing defendant’s cell phone from the call log of a seized cell phone was not a search. If defendant wanted his number to remain private, he should block the number or turn off the phone. United States v. Katana, 2021 … Continue reading

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D.Mass.: 15 month delay in getting SW for cell phone seized with PC was unreasonable, but GFE applies

The 15-month delay between seizure of a cell phone with probable cause is was unreasonable, applying United States v. Smith, 967 F.3d 198, 202 (2d Cir. 2020). However, the court finds that the good faith exception applies, and the court … Continue reading

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MA: Planning of homicide with co-conspirator was nexus for cell phone SW

It was reasonable for the magistrate to conclude that evidence of defendant’s planning of a homicide would be on his cell phone because he communicated with co-conspirators. Therefore, nexus to the phone was shown. Commonwealth v. Snow, 2021 Mass. LEXIS … Continue reading

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GA: Cell phone believed to be on def’s person at time of robbery and murder is subject for SW for evidence of the crimes

The affidavit for the warrant showed probable cause and particularity for search of defendant’s cell phone for evidence of an armed robbery and murder [essentially on the officer’s experience]. The trial court suppressed a pre-warrant search of defendant’s cell phone, … Continue reading

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Geofence warrants can be used to identify those who invaded the Capitol, not to mention Facebook warrants

The government’s prior use of geofence warrants were a prelude to this: With the invasion of the Capitol on Wednesday, the government now can attempt to locate all the cell phones inside the Capitol to identify those to potentially charge. … Continue reading

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CA5: Affidavit for SW for cell phone photos didn’t show PC for drug trafficking

The affidavit for the search warrant for defendant’s cell phone for evidence of drug trafficking and not just personal use did not permit a search of the photographs on the phone for evidence of drug trafficking. The good faith exception … Continue reading

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CNS: Judges Grapple With Phone, Laptop Searches at US Customs

CNS: Judges Grapple With Phone, Laptop Searches at US Customs by Thomas Harrison (“The First Circuit struggled Tuesday with a policy that lets border agents look through the phones or laptops of travelers returning from abroad.”)

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