S.D.Fla.: 28 days of warrantless GPS tracking of a boat suppressed under Jones

Defendant’s boat was adrift off West Palm Beach, Florida for a few hours when the Coast Guard found him and boarded the boat. It was towed to the Coast Guard station and a border search was conducted. Nothing was found, although intel revealed the boat was suspicious for various reasons. Defendant’s story about being on an overnight fishing trip to Bimini didn’t seem to hold water, either. The Coast Guard told him he couldn’t leave the boat there, so he had it towed to a marina for repair. Before he left, the Coast Guard warrantlessly installed a GPS device on the boat which was monitored for 28 days. This was well after Jones–this year–and it is suppressed. The border search was complete and the boat to be towed when that happened [even if the border search exception would allow it]. United States v. Senese, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 107660 (S.D. Fla. June 28, 2018).

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