Justices: 'Get a warrant' to search cellphones

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  • Aggie238 Logan, UT
    June 26, 2014 9:50 a.m.


    It's very easy to determine if the driver was texting or calling after the fact. There's nothing that makes it necessary for the police officer to search the phone immediately. These records can be obtained from the phone carrier using a warrant if there is a reasonable suspicion that the driver was texting. This is pretty standard procedure even now. I recall an incident where a girl was driving alone on a remote stretch of road in Idaho and was killed in a fatal single vehicle accident. Later it was determined that several text messages had been sent from her phone at or about the time she had crashed.

  • My2Cents Taylorsville, UT
    June 26, 2014 3:54 a.m.

    About time and it should extend to all digital computers and private data sources and storage devices. For the police to act without warrant is like putting a person under hypnosis and question him against his will and use it as evidence. The 5th amendment rights not to incriminate your self applies to everything they own or keep in the privacy of their homes is protected by constitutional rights. Only evidence acquired outside the home and not on their person is public and subject to search and seizure by warrants.

    In cases of accidents or public crimes does not give victims or criminals rights to search. In civil cases they could be more lenient in phone evidences but still you have to prove the drives was the one using his phone and that the time stamp on messages or use is accurate. Devices with time stamps can be adjusted up or down so evidence is subjective.

  • djofraleigh raleigh, NC
    June 25, 2014 6:08 p.m.

    I see the court's point, but in my life and cell phone use, I'd like the police to be able to take the phone of a driver after hitting me to see if the driver was texting. I guess phone records could still be subpoenaed and text messages sent/received time are recorded are recorded? It would also be possible to determine average speed from GPS info if called/texts were being made, I suspect. The most life threatening thing my family members do is being on the highway.

  • Aggie238 Logan, UT
    June 25, 2014 3:16 p.m.

    Excellent! The wording of the opinion also seems to be drawing the battle lines for when the NSA's actions inevitably come before the SCOTUS. The precedent set in this opinion sets a very high bar for the NSA to jump over when that happens. The separation between police officers manually searching phones to government spy agencies doing it remotely is extremely small, if it exists at all. In contrast, the comparison between mining phone data and the information on the outside of a letter commonly used by proponents of the surveillance state is a logical leap more akin to the comparison between a horseback ride and a flight to the moon described by Justice Roberts. Great news for privacy advocates and all U.S. citizens!

  • Hooky Riverton, UT
    June 25, 2014 1:36 p.m.

    This is excellent news. We already have too many government intrusions into our personal lives. This was the right decision.