Supreme court cases from warrantless searches

In prior cases, this Court has held that a person has no expectation of privacy in information he voluntarily turned over to third parties. For example, in one case, the Court ruled that the police could install a device at phone company offices that recorded the phone numbers a suspect called. In another case, warrantless airplane surveillance of a fenced backyard was allowed for purposes of detecting marijuana cultivation.

Iowa Supreme Court Closes Warrant Loophole, Slams U.S. Supreme Court For Weakening Fourth Amendment

The police should be allowed to gather evidence that any member of the public could also see and gather. Therefore, we hold that the trash collected may be used as evidence against Greenwood. Problem a. What are the two strongest arguments in Opinion A? What are the two strongest arguments in Opinion B? Which opinion do you agree with?

Give your reasons. Which opinion do you think represents the majority view of the U. Supreme Court in this case?


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What is the importance of allowing the evidence from the search of the garbage to be used in the case against Greenwood? Could he be arrested and convicted without the evidence?

Amendment IV: Warrant Clause

Can a private citizen go through someone's trash without violating the law? What if a reporter does it to gather information for a news article?

Do you see a difference between open and closed trash? Greenwood, U. Research the case in a law library. What other arguments do you find in the judicial opinions expressed on both sides of this question? Do you agree with the Supreme Court decision? The testing procedure was to work this way. The student selected is accompanied by a school official of the same sex to the bathroom, provided with an empty specimen bottle, and allowed to enter the lavatory and close the door to produce a sample. The monitor stands outside the door and checks the temperature of the sample by hand to assure its genuineness.

The sample is marked with the student's ID number no names are used with the samples and sent to a private laboratory for evaluation. If it tests positive, it is sent to a second laboratory and put through a more expensive and more accurate test. If it still tests positive, the student and parent are notified and asked to supply any evidence that might provide an innocent explanation for the result for example, evidence that the student was taking a prescription drug. If there is no satisfactory explanation, the student is suspended from participation in a portion of the varsity competitions held during the athletic season.

Students who violate this policy are also referred to a drug education course. No other penalties are imposed. After learning of the drug-testing program at an organizational meeting, two female swimmers decided not to go out for the team. They then brought a lawsuit in federal court claiming that the school's program violated their rights. Why did the school decide to implement the drug-testing program?

Additional topics

What legal issue is involved in this case? What arguments could the student athletes make in attacking the school's policy? What arguments could the school make in defending its policy? Is the school's policy reasonable or unreasonable? Consider the policy, along with policies 2, 3 and 4 below, in terms of their reasonableness. Place the number of each policy on the accompanying continuum where you believe it belongs. What makes some of the policies more reasonable than others? Student athletes are tested for drugs as described in this problem.

In a school where there has been some violence, metal detectors are installed at all outside doors. All students and staff members must pass through the detectors each day to enter the school. A large urban school system institutes a policy of random drug-testing of all high school students. A large urban school system only tests a student for drugs when there is a reasonable suspicion that the individual student is using drugs.

What arguments were made on both sides of this question? Do you agree with the court's decision? Notes 1.

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Supreme Court Rules 8-1 Against Warrantless Police Search in Important Fourth Amendment Case

Garcia quoting Wolf v Colorado, U. Morrow and Company, , Katz v United States , U.

Professor Rose Discusses Probable Cause & the 4th Amendment

Justice Appel was appointed to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice James Carter. He argued that the search violated his rights under the Fourth Amendment and the equivalent part of the Iowa Constitution article I, section 8 and filed a motion to suppress the evidence. Thanks to a string of decisions by the U. But those policies are created by the very agencies that perform the searches. According to Justice Appel, the U. But Justice Appel made short work of those justifications. First, when a car has been impounded at a secure location and has been separated from the owner or driver, it's hardly a menace to society.

But 21st century technology enables persistent, real-time, and even retroactive tracking of not just one of us, but of all of us — merely with the click of a button. The New England cases provide an opportunity for courts to apply Carpenter to different, but no less important facts. Almonor in Massachusetts and State v. Another Massachusetts case, Commonwealth v. A third Massachusetts case, Commonwealth v. The ACLU of Massachusetts filed friend of the court briefs in Almonor and Johnson , arguing law enforcement in both cases violated the constitutional rights of Mr. Almonor and Mr.

Further Readings

Johnson by performing warrantless searches of their location information. In the Johnson case, police investigating a string of robberies searched five months of Mr. The search ultimately resulted in his arrest.

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The Massachusetts high court has previously held that Article 14, which served as the inspiration for the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, requires that even probation officers need individualized suspicion and judicial approval before they may search probationers. And where — as in this case — the search is conducted by police, the same court has ruled that it must meet the traditional constitutional standard of a warrant supported by probable cause.

Thanks to these warrantless searches, police traced Mr. Almonor to a private residence and Mr. Both were arrested at those locations.