- CA5: Unconditional guilty plea waives 4A claims
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- CA11: Work-related injuries don’t necessarily translate into OSHA violations; records request quashed as overbroad
- NYTimes: How an Unlikely Family History Website Transformed Cold Case Investigations
- WaPo: Opinion: Little Rock’s dangerous and illegal drug war
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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: Overbreadth
W.D.Ky.: SW particularity and the scope of search that occurred are separate “arguments [that] must not be confused”
The search warrant was particular, and the search was not overbroad, confined within the scope of the warrant. They are separate “arguments [that] must not be confused.” United States v. Aley, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 59527 (W.D. Ky. Apr. 9, … Continue reading
E.D.Va.: CP SW for images “created, modified or stored in any form,” including electronically included a cell phone
A child pornography search warrant for images “created, modified or stored in any form,” including electronically included a cell phone. As to defendant’s Franks challenge, his complaint about hearsay completely fails because whatever the police had, they obtained another person’s … Continue reading
A warrant seeking emails from the opening of the account was justified by the nature of the probable cause alleged and the time period at issue. Also, even if the officer went too far, the good faith exception would have … Continue reading
NY3: Building didn’t appear to be two units; SW for def’s dwelling, he answered door, and then they saw
The search warrant’s describing the dwelling as a single family dwelling when it was really two and defendant lived on the second floor didn’t make it overbroad. It did not appear to be a multi-unit dwelling and defendant answered the … Continue reading
CA6: Seizure under SW was valid despite a catchall phrase because it was severable; suppression of phone search reversed
Defendants were suspected of committing a series of home invasion robberies, and they were charged with racketeering. The district court suppressed the searches of their phones for the use of language too general. The government concedes there was an overbroad … Continue reading
NYLJ: Judge Urges Action to Curb ‘Overbroad’ Digital Search Warrants by Andrew Denney: Overbroad search warrants for digital evidence are “all too common” in New York, are often green-lighted by busy judges who are focused on processing motions and are … Continue reading
In an unpublished opinion (that will at least be in Federal Appendix), the Tenth Circuit holds that the use of a “catch-all” phrase and “not limited to” in a search warrant made it incurably overbroad. The court also held that … Continue reading
MA: PC was shown for searching def’s cell phone for messages to and from murder victim; SW’s overbreadth was cured by searchers’ limiting scope of search
Probable cause was shown to search defendant’s cell phone for text messages and calls from the murder victim. The victim’s phone wasn’t found, and it was logical there could be information on the phone and the victim’s was taken to … Continue reading
The showing of probable cause for defendant’s blood testing specified alcohol, but the warrant actually said alcohol or drugs could be tested for. This was not unreasonable considering defendant’s driving which was a part of the probable cause. Roberts v. … Continue reading
D.Mass.: Email warrant for all material so it can be electronically and specifically searched was reasonable
The email search warrant produced 430,081 items, and the database provided then had to be searched. That complied with the terms of the search warrant and the Fourth Amendment because it still provided particularity. United States v. Aboshady, 2017 U.S. … Continue reading