Protective sweep (over)broadly held to include looking for a murder weapon. Commonwealth v. Harrell, 2013 PA Super 82, 65 A.3d 420 (2013):
Here, officers arrested appellant on the front porch of his residence. (Trial court opinion, 7/13/11 at 29.) However, they did not recover the weapon used to kill the two victims. (Id.) A female, described as frantic, exited the residence and informed officers that there were children inside. (Id.) Officers did not know at that time if there was anyone else involved in the shooting, if the murder weapon was inside the house, or if the children were in danger. (Id.) Under these circumstances, the officers were justified in performing a protective sweep of the residence.
Buie protective sweep is limited to looking for other people. Here, the court's conclusion should have been "the gun probably was in the house and children were in the house so exigency (or public safety, see New York v. Quarles) justified locating the gun under exigent circumstances. As to the other person, a protective sweep was permissible, although protective sweep only justifies a plain view."
Indiana requires a warrant to seize evidence from property in safekeeping when a defendant is awaiting trial. Seizure of DNA from defendant’s shoe when he was in custody in violation of the Indiana Constitution was harmless error where the state put on four witnesses that defendant admitted murder by a baseball bat. Guilmette v. State, 986 N.E.2d 335 (Ind. App. 2013).*
State officers had reasonable suspicion to detain defendant for violation of an order of protection based on statements from the protectees. That supported the finding of the red dye stained money on his person that linked him to a bank robbery. United States v. Douglas, 522 Fed. Appx. 125 (3d Cir. 2013).*
Defendant’s stepson had authority to consent to a search of a shed for weapons where he kept his own there and had a key. The consent was not coerced because he was told he did not have to talk to the police. United States v. Ervin, 517 Fed. Appx. 734, 2013-1 U.S. Tax Cas. (CCH) P50,288, 111 A.F.T.R.2d (RIA) 1717 (11th Cir. 2013).*
In a case of destruction of a building without notice, the Fourth Amendment reasonableness claim parallels the Fourteenth Amendment claim. The jury instructions were erroneous because they allowed the jury to find a Fourth Amendment violation only if an emergency justified tearing down the building. RBIII, L.P. v. City of San Antonio, 713 F.3d 840 (5th Cir. 2013).*
There was a robbery of a cab driver outside a hotel, and the suspect fled into the hotel. Hotel security could see him go to the fifth floor and followed. On the fifth floor, he wasn’t seen, but two men were talking loudly in a room and hotel security knocked. Nobody came to the door and it got quiet. The security person returned to the lobby. When police arrived, he took them to the room. The police entry into the room, while a close question, was with exigent circumstances because of the possibility that he holed up in a room of somebody else and had them hostage. He wasn’t the renter of the room. Finally, to be an abandonment, disclaiming ownership of property seized by the government has to occur before the search not after. United States v. Ojonugwa, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57777 (N.D. Tex. April 23, 2013):
One defendant subjected to a government recording of his call with a consenting person has standing to challenge the voluntariness of consent of the other person. United States v. Hawkins, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 187767 (W.D. Mo. October 18, 2012):
While the Corona-Chavez case does not address the issues of standing or the voluntariness of a consent, numerous other cases have found that defendants, such as defendant Hawkins, do have standing to challenge the voluntariness of another's consent to the recording of a phone conversation with them. In United States v. Hodge, 539 F.2d 898, 900 (6th Cir. 1976), cert. denied, 429 U.S. 1091, 97 S. Ct. 1100, 51 L. Ed. 2d 536 (1977), a government informant (Mondaine) consented to the recording of telephone conversations between himself and defendant Hodge. Defendant Hodge argued that admission of the conversations into evidence violated the Fourth and Fifth Amendments of the United States Constitution and 18 U.S.C. § 2511. Id. The court found: [¶] ... A person may challenge government evidence on the ground that it was seized by electronic surveillance violative of his Fourth Amendment right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures if the person was a party to the conversation ....
Putting video camera over bathroom stalls of the Iowa Civil Commitment Unit for Sex Offenders violated the inmates' reasonable expectation of privacy. The recordings were not monitored in real time. Arnzen v. Palmer, 713 F.3d 369 (8th Cir. 2013):
While the Eighth Circuit hasn’t ruled, the significant weight of authority says that a search incident of a cell phone is permissible in a search incident (citing lots of cases), particularly where the phone is directly linked to the offense. Here, it was soliciting a 15 year old prostitute and the meeting was arranged by text message and calls to and from cell phones. United States v. Nyuon, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 56916 (D. S.D. March 7, 2013).*
A notebook was seized from defendant’s vehicle in a credit card fraud case, and there was probable cause to believe it contained evidence of the crime. United States v. Harris, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 56130 (N.D. Ind. April 18, 2013).*
Defendant is accused of campaign finance violations in a Senate race in Nevada. His company fired him, and 81 boxes of information was turned over to its lawyers. The lawyers searched the boxes and found sufficient evidence to turn over to the FBI. This was a private search because there was no prior or contemporaneous government involvement. United States v. Whittemore, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57198 (D. Nev. April 18, 2013).*
When a police officer told defendant that child protective services needed to come in and talk to him, his saying “okay” was not a consent to enter; it is mere acknowledgment of the request. The lack of consent is bolstered by the fact defendant did not move and tried to shut the door on the officer. United States v. Aguirre, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57352 (W.D. Tex. April 19, 2013).*
Arrest of defendant at his door was not a Payton violation. When he asked to get his shoes and tell his daughter he was going, the police had to follow under Chrisman, and that was reasonable. He was told they’d follow if he went in. United States v. Allen, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57010 (D. Vt. April 22, 2013).*
The district court’s finding that exigent circumstances for the entry was based on presence of accomplices was supported by the record. United States v. Eikelboom, 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 8088 (5th Cir. April 22, 2013).*
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"If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. It isn't, and they don't."
"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
—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
—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!”
—Pepé Le Pew
"There is never enough time, unless you are serving it."
"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."
—Johnson v. United States, 333 U.S. 10, 13-14 (1948)