- CA7: City’s use of “smart meter” is a search, but it is reasonable because it’s not for criminal purposes and law enforcement never knows
- D.Me.: Where a couple shared a closet, her apparent authority extended to whole closet, not just his side
- DE: Def counsel was not ineffective for not arguing obvious typo on date justified suppression because it didn’t
- cnn.com: Police use Taser on 87-year-old woman cutting dandelions with a knife
- CA11: CSLI order was based on six week old precedent from this court; Davis GFE applies
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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: Scope of search
Defendant’s cell phone was seized with a warrant. Defendant was questioned and he lawyered up, but the officer ignored it and kept asking questions. Finally, defendant gave up the passcode for the phone. This is a Fifth Amendment issue, not … Continue reading
The issue of scope of a consent search has to be presented to the trial court to be preserved. This wasn’t. United States v. Vargas, 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 26869 (10th Cir. Dec. 28, 2017). There is no right to … Continue reading
An anonymous caller said defendant was smoking marijuana on his car. This was reasonable suspicion at best. Assuming the smell of marijuana provides probable cause to search, the search was for marijuana, and inspecting credit cards unreasonably expanded the search. … Continue reading
The car defendant back seat passenger was in was stopped for a traffic violation, and there was a furtive movement by the front seat passenger just before the vehicle came to a stop. The driver said they were going to … Continue reading
D.Conn.: Police research before the search showed this was a single family dwelling, and it essentially was; remedy for that wouldn’t help def anyway
Defendant argued that the search warrant was overbroad because the property was a multi-family unit. Actually and factually, his argument boils down to: I can lock my door, so I have a separate privacy interest. The officers looked at the … Continue reading
MN: Search of guest’s purse under SW was reasonable on totality because it wasn’t on her when police entered and it could have been associated with premises
Search of a guest’s purse during execution of a search warrant was reasonable here under the totality of the circumstances. The target of the search was a woman, and a purse is commonly associated with women. When it was found, … Continue reading
A warrant to seize computers in a child pornography case includes the power to search it. There was probable cause for the search warrants, and the Franks challenge was too deficient to get a hearing. United States v. Cohen, 2017 … Continue reading
MA: SW for def’s apt in drug case could authorize seizure of cell phone used to arrange drug transaction and orange shirt worn at time
The trial court erred in allowing defendant’s motion to suppress because the warrant affidavit established probable cause to believe defendant, acting through a middleman, sold cocaine to a street-level dealer. Thus, the seizure of nine cell phones found in defendant’s … Continue reading
TX14: SW seizure of things besides child pornography to show def’s connection to the premises did not make the search unreasonable
The affidavit for the search warrant for defendant’s home and computer for child pornography was based on probable cause. The seizure of things besides child pornography to show defendant’s connection to the premises did not make the search unreasonable. (§ … Continue reading
MA: Trial court suppression of confession on tape was clearly erroneous; with PC to arrest, def’s clothing could be seized and forensically tested
The trial court’s order suppressing defendant’s confession and the subsequent search of his clothing is reversed as clearly erroneous. Defendant’s arrest was with probable cause, and that allowed seizure and forensic testing of his clothing. Commonwealth v. Tremblay, 2017 Mass. … Continue reading