Sunday, July 20, 2014

Warrants

http://www.lawofficer.com/article/news/us-supreme-court-rules-cellpho#

The Supreme Court of the United States has said that officers can't search cell phones on anyone in custody.  The officers require a warrant to search the cell phone of suspects in custody.  I think this is a reasonable requirement.  Just because someone is arrested for a minor traffic warrant does not mean officers should have the right to gather up all the data on their electronic devices.

It used to be that cell phones only had cell phone numbers inside them and gathering that information is not much more than getting a paper address book.  These days, cell phones contain texts, phone messages, photos and videos.  Much more than a simple phone would contain.

If there is a reasonable law enforcement reason for gathering the information on a cell phone, then it should not be too difficult to get a warrant.  I think the legal standard to get such a warrant should be low, given that it is only data being seized and not physical property or people.  Part of the way we can keep getting this data warrants is to keep the information obtained secret.  Don't release nude photos and sex videos sized unless they relate directly to the specific crime; that's what the SGT Says.

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