- W.D.Va.: Def counsel’s decision not to pursue a motion to suppress was reasonable and designed to prevent superseding indictment with higher MM
- N.D.Ind.: Mixed motive for traffic stop isn’t 4A violation as long as there is objective basis for RS
- W.D.Wash.: Govt showed cause to deny return of property until 2255 was over in case of retrial
- NJ: Officer had RS def was armed; refusal of patdown justified exigent strip search at station house
- S.D.Tex.: Immigration stop 56 miles from border was without RS
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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: Seizure
From 1919-2014, it violated Michigan law to have an unlicensed dog over six months old, and state law and city ordinance permitted officials to kill them. In 2014, that changed. Plaintiffs became squatters in an abandoned house in Detroit, and … Continue reading
TN: Def wasn’t seized when officer parked next to him to talk, but he was when he tried to leave and was told to stop; all reasonable
Stopping next to defendant’s car to talk to him wasn’t a seizure. When defendant moved and attempted to leave, the officer told him to stop, and that was a seizure. The encounter was based on an anonymous caller’s information, and … Continue reading
Defendant wasn’t seized by being bumped by police car because he went another three miles without stopping. “Moreover, the Eleventh Circuit and courts across different circuits have concluded that no seizure occurs where police attempt to stop a fleeing vehicle … Continue reading
W.D.Tenn.: Reasonable to block and stop a car that an officer thought had the subject of an arrest warrant in it
It was reasonable for the officer to block a car because he reasonably suspected that the person he wanted on an arrest warrant was in it and the honking of the car horn might have been a warning to others … Continue reading
Defendant was arrested for impersonating a DEA officer and using his car to do it. That gave probable cause to search the car. Defendant’s argument that there was an unreasonable inventory are off the mark. United States v. Wade, 2018 … Continue reading
Plaintiff’s overdetention claim doesn’t lie under the Fourth Amendment but it does under the Fifth. “According to Jones, strip searching an inmate who has been ordered released before returning that inmate to the general population violates the Fourth Amendment unless … Continue reading
“Officer Myers’ instruction to ‘hang tight’ while he ran Defendant’s driver’s license [and had it in hand], would lead a reasonable person in Defendant’s shoes not to feel free to leave. Thus, the consensual encounter became a seizure under the … Continue reading
W.D.N.C.: When they had PC for rural house, entry to freeze situation was reasonable when magistrate was two hours away
After police stopped a car suspected in drug deals, they learned that the drugs came from a particular address which was used as a distribution point. They developed probable cause for the house. They were two hours away from a … Continue reading
Police used intel to make an inquiry of defendant. Until he was made to accompany the officer to a security office, he wasn’t seized. Then, there was consent on the totality. United States v. Martin, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 134183 … Continue reading
IL: To argue defense counsel was ineffective for not arguing “seizure” instead of “search” is frivolous here
Defendant claimed his counsel was ineffective for not arguing the seizure was unreasonable rather than the search. That’s frivolous. People v. Lee, 2018 IL App (3d) 160100, 2018 Ill. App. LEXIS 569 (Aug. 1, 2018). [I had the same argument … Continue reading
The Grand Rapids Police Department has a policy permitting officers to photograph and fingerprint people who are stopped just because they want to. The plaintiffs stated a claim for relief against the city for its policy. Johnson v. Vanderkooi, 2018 … Continue reading