Supreme Court May Examine GPS Surveillance Issue


Last October, we reported on a unanimous ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, holding that prosecutors must obtain a warrant before attaching a GPS device to a criminal suspect’s car.

The court found in that case that the act of attaching such a device to a suspect’s vehicle is a “search” that requires a warrant from a judge under the Fourth Amendment.

At the time, we predicted that the case might go to the U.S. Supreme Court, and now it has, at least for consideration. Last month the U.S. Department of Justice asked the high court to review the October 2010 D.C. Circuit ruling. The petition for certiorari, filed by Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, cites a conflict between the D.C. Circuit, on the one hand, and the 7th, 8th, and 9th Circuits, on the other hand.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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