Fourth Amendment Supreme Court of the United States

The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures and provides that warrants may only be granted upon findings of probable cause. The Fourth... more +
The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures and provides that warrants may only be granted upon findings of probable cause. The Fourth Amendment applies to the States via the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.  Important areas of Fourth Amendment jurisprudence flow from questions surrounding the definitions of "search" and "seizure," the applicability of the Amendment to so-called "stop and frisk" situations, the level of control that must be exerted by law enforcement before an individual is deemed "seized," and the "exclusionary rule," just to name a few.    less -
News & Analysis as of

What’s in Your Wallet? Who Cares—What’s in Your Cell Phone Is More Important!

The United States Supreme Court has tackled the issue of cell phone privacy and ruled that data is different from other forms of technology. In late June, the Supreme Court issued an opinion: those of David Riley, a...more

U.S. Supreme Court: Warrant Generally Required to Search Information on a Cell Phone, Even Incident to Arrest

The United States Supreme Court has ruled that police officers must generally secure a warrant before searching through the contents of a cell phone of a person they arrest. This decision will have important implications for...more

Supreme Court to Protect Information on Cell Phones

The digital age has created a world in which over-sharing is the norm and electronic devices are capable of storing significant amounts of one’s personal information. However, in an important step to protect the privacy of...more

Five Lessons for Employers from California v. Riley

In the waning days of its current term, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously in California v. Riley that police officers generally violate the Fourth Amendment's prohibition against unreasonable searches by conducting a...more

Editorial: High Court Is Swinging Pendulum Back On 4th Amendment

Fourth Amendment law is anything but static. If one surveys the jurisprudential landscape over the last 50 years, there are three amendments that the U.S. Supreme Court cannot leave alone: the First, the Fourth and the Fifth....more

United States Supreme Court: Warrants are required to search digital data on seized cell phones

On June 25, 2014, in Riley v. California, a unanimous United States Supreme Court held that the Fourth Amendment requires that police obtain a warrant prior to searching the digital data found on an arrested suspect’s cell...more

U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision Raises Questions About Cell Phone Searches in Schools

The long-standing test for searching students at school requires that the search must be based on a “reasonable suspicion” that the student violated a school rule or law. A recent criminal decision from the United States...more

Supreme Court Prohibits Warrantless Mobile Phone Searches, Underscores Individual Right to Privacy

The Supreme Court of the United States released a unanimous decision last week barring law enforcement from searching the mobile phones of individuals placed under arrest without first obtaining a search warrant or the...more

Supreme Court Rules That Police May Not Search Cell Phones Without A Warrant

One of the fundamental liberties protected by the Bill of Rights is freedom from unreasonable searches. The Fourth Amendment reflects the concern that “We the People” should not be subjected to intrusive searches of our...more

A Victory for Personal Information Privacy

In a stunning victory for Fourth Amendment rights and personal information privacy generally, the United States Supreme Court in Riley v California has held that police may not search an arrestee’s cell phone without a...more

U.S. Supreme Court: Police Must Obtain Warrant Before Searching Cell Phones

In a decision that changes the way law enforcement officers collect electronic information, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Riley v. California, 573 U.S. ___ (2014), that officers may not search a cell phone incident to a...more

Landmark Supreme Court Ruling Protects Cell Phones from Warrantless Searches

On June 25, 2014, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that police must first obtain a warrant before searching the cell phones of arrested individuals, except in “exigent circumstances.” Chief Justice John Roberts authored...more

Privacy & Data Security Update: Supreme Court Rules that Warrants are Required for Cell Phone Searches

On June 25th, the Supreme Court brought the Fourth Amendment into the digital age with its ruling in Riley v. California. The case presented the question of whether a warrant was required in order for law enforcement to...more

Supreme Court Decides Riley v. California and United States v. Wurie

On June 25, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States decided Riley v. California, No. 13-132, and United States v. Wurie, No. 13-212, holding that police must generally obtain a warrant before searching a cell phone...more

U.S. Supreme Court Cell Phone Privacy Decision Deserves Employer Attention

In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this week in Riley v. California that police generally may not conduct a warrantless search of digital data stored on the cell phone of someone who has been arrested. The...more

Litigation Alert: Supreme Court Defends Expectation of Privacy In Cell Phone Data

The Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, limited the ability of law enforcement to search cell phones while making arrests, requiring police to obtain a search warrant before examining the data contained in an arrestee’s...more

Supreme Court Relies on Reed Smith Brief in Cell Phone Search Cases

The Supreme Court decided Riley v. California and United States v. Wurie yesterday, June 25, and unanimously held that the search incident to arrest doctrine does not allow law enforcement officers to search data on cell...more

Court: Police Need Warrant to Search Phone. But Guess What? They Get to Keep Your Phone While They Get One.

Will cops still get access to cell phone data post arrest? You bet. Today’s Supreme Court decision just means they need to get permission from a judge before they start searching who you have been texting. And odds are very...more

BB&K Police Bulletin: Officers Must Obtain Warrant to Access Data on Arrestee's Mobile Phone Device

Overview: Today, the U.S. Supreme Court held that police officers may not search digital information on a mobile phone device seized from a person who has been arrested without a warrant. In Riley v. California and U.S. v....more

Supreme Court Unanimously Rules That Police Officers Cannot Search the Contents of Cell Phones Incident to Arrest Without...

In Riley v. California, the United States Supreme Court unanimously held that the Fourth Amendment prohibits police officers from searching through the data on an arrested suspect's cell phone as an "incident to the arrest"...more

Supreme Court Fires Shot Across The Bow Of NSA Metadata Collection

Recent revelations concerning the activities of the National Security Agency (“NSA”) include reports that the NSA and other government agencies have – in secret – routinely collected in bulk the “metadata” associated with...more

BB&K Police Bulletin: No Fourth or Fourteenth Amendment Violations For Using Deadly Force to Terminate Dangerous High-Speed Chase

Deadly force may be used if the driver poses a grave public safety risk - Overview: The U.S. Supreme Court recently held that officers did not violate a suspect’s Fourth or Fourteenth amendment rights when they opted...more

Can A GPS Result In TMI?

The answer is “yes” – tracking employees by using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) can give an employer too much information (TMI). Surreptitious Surveillance In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court held (in the case of U.S....more

BB&K Police Bulletin: Warrantless Home Search

Supreme Court Upholds Warrantless Home Search Where One Occupant Consents Following Suspect’s Arrest - Overview: The Supreme Court has ruled that police officers can conduct warrantless home searches based upon one...more

BB&K Police Bulletin: Qualified Immunity: Warrantless Entry in Hot Pursuit of Misdemeanant Not "Plainly Incompetent"

Overview: The U.S. Supreme Court recently reversed a Ninth Circuit decision denying qualified immunity to a California police officer in hot pursuit of a suspected misdemeanant. The suspect had entered an enclosed front yard...more

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