- E.D.Cal.: Alleged search of a public computer in a library for ptf’s usage didn’t violate any REP
- W.D.N.Y.: “Affidavit of personal knowledge” to show standing isn’t satisfied by the officer’s police reports
- D.Mass.: Def made his Franks at the suppression hearing; statement was reckless and completely undermined nexus to house
- IN: Recording a recording off a Facebook account doesn’t violate the federal wiretap law
- WaPo: Opinion: ‘The Watch’ blog: Lunch links: Louisiana attorney general approves of arresting people who threaten to file police complaints
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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: Standards of review
E.D.N.C.: Mere disagreement with state court conclusion on 4A claim doesn’t overcome Stone v. Powell bar
Defendant litigated his search in state court and lost in the trial court and on appeal. He filed a habeas petition. “Petitioner’s disagreement with the ultimate disposition of his Fourth Amendment claim does not indicate he was not given a … Continue reading
CA9: Pro se ptf’s allegation that the officers “beat the crap out of” him was not too vague and conclusory to support an excessive force claim
“[T]he allegation that the officers ‘beat the crap out of’ plaintiff was [not] too vague and conclusory to support a legally cognizable claim. The panel held that plaintiff’s use of a colloquial, shorthand phrase made plain that he was alleging … Continue reading
An alternative interpretation of a witness’s testimony at a suppression hearing not drawn by the judge hearing the motion doesn’t permit reversal. Commonwealth v. Gonzalez, 2018 Mass. App. LEXIS 28 (Mar. 12, 2018).* Plaintiff’s complaint against a judge for an … Continue reading
NE: Because of direct evidence def was involved in crime, computer search history was harmless error, if error at all
Defendant challenged the search for lack of probable cause of the search history of his computer that produced evidence he searched for violent pornographic videos that matched how the victim was killed. There was direct evidence he was involved in … Continue reading
NM: Trial court found truth between dashcam video and the testimony of the officer and the def; still entitled to deference on appeal
The trial court considered the dashcam and the officer’s and defendant’s testimony because the dashcam wasn’t conclusive: “But I think it just goes to show you really need to review the video in every case. And in this case, after … Continue reading
The trial court could rely on the dashcam video over the officer’s testimony where there was an apparent contradiction. State v. Wilson, 2017-Ohio-9317, 2017 Ohio App. LEXIS 5816 (2d Dist. Dec. 29, 2017). Defendant’s stop was based on reasonable suspicion … Continue reading
MO: Where 2 SWs authorize search, both have to be suppressed for def to prevail; challenging only one is moot
There were two search warrants authorizing the search of defendant’s computers for child pornography. He challenged the second but not the first, and that makes his argument moot. State v. Cato, 2017 Mo. App. LEXIS 1298 (Dec. 12, 2017). A … Continue reading
With no transcript of the suppression hearing, there’s nothing to contradict the trial court’s findings. State v. Harding, 2017-Ohio-8930, 2017 Ohio App. LEXIS 5373 (12th Dist. Dec. 11, 2017). Defense counsel’s failure to file a motion to suppress wasn’t ineffective … Continue reading
The state didn’t raise the good faith exception in the trial court, but the court applies the “we can affirm on any ground” rule to apply it anyway. State v. Weakland, 2017 Ariz. App. LEXIS 202 (Nov. 28, 2017):
OH12: Def’s petition for discretionary review dismissed for failure to file briefs leaves appellate result intact
The trial court suppressed but the court of appeals reversed. The supreme court granted discretionary review, but it was dismissed for defendant’s failure to file a brief. The case was remanded back to the trial court, and the appellate reversal … Continue reading