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Supreme Court to Hear Cases of Cell Phone Searches

April 28, 2014  | 

In a major test of how to interpret the Fourth Amendment in the digital age, the Supreme Court on Tuesday will consider two cases about whether the police need warrants to search the cellphones of the people they arrest.

According to a New York Times article, the courts have long allowed warrantless searches in connection with arrests, saying they are justified by the need to protect police officers and to prevent the destruction of evidence. The Justice Department, in its Supreme Court briefs, said the old rule should apply to the new devices.

Others say there must be a different standard because of the sheer amount of data on and available through cellphones.

Comments (2)

Displaying 1 - 2 of 2

BG @ 4/29/2014 5:54 AM

If they determine it's not kosher, I guess a lot of phones will start getting seized pursuant to applying for a search warrant.

LLC @ 4/29/2014 7:46 AM

Most jurisdictions have already made the policy change to require search warrants. I'm a retired LEO with some 32 yrs with my department. I got into the cell phone forensics device craze such as the cellebrite and other computer software before I left. It's true that the bad guys are learning to remotely destroy data on mobile devices. A simple faraday bag can help. But in the end, the Supreme Court will rule in favor of a search warrant in most cases, excluding exigent circumstances.

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