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Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:46 AM

High Court: Warrant Needed For GPS Tracking

WASHINGTON (AP) The Supreme Court says police must get a search warrant before using GPS technology to track criminal suspects.

The court ruled in the case of Washington, D.C., nightclub owner Antoine Jones. A federal appeals court in Washington overturned his drug conspiracy conviction because police did not have a warrant when they installed a GPS device on his vehicle and then tracked his movements for a month.

The GPS device helped authorities link Jones to a suburban house used to stash money and drugs. He was sentenced to life in prison before the appeals court overturned the conviction. The Supreme Court agreed with the appeals court.


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=145639480

41 replies, 5593 views

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Reply High Court: Warrant Needed For GPS Tracking (Original post)
MaineDem Jan 2012 OP
msanthrope Jan 2012 #1
Guy Montag Jan 2012 #2
mopinko Jan 2012 #3
Logical Jan 2012 #4
krispos42 Jan 2012 #5
awoke_in_2003 Jan 2012 #33
BumRushDaShow Jan 2012 #6
Bolo Boffin Jan 2012 #7
liberalhistorian Jan 2012 #8
former9thward Jan 2012 #16
liberalhistorian Jan 2012 #23
former9thward Jan 2012 #27
Orrex Jan 2012 #9
Hell Hath No Fury Jan 2012 #10
tk2kewl Jan 2012 #11
PA Democrat Jan 2012 #12
MicaelS Jan 2012 #13
Warren Stupidity Jan 2012 #15
MicaelS Jan 2012 #17
suffragette Jan 2012 #29
cthulu2016 Jan 2012 #34
suffragette Jan 2012 #40
bluedigger Jan 2012 #14
SteveG Jan 2012 #18
FraDon Jan 2012 #19
Laelth Jan 2012 #20
msongs Jan 2012 #21
rocktivity Jan 2012 #22
groundloop Jan 2012 #24
Odin2005 Jan 2012 #25
Ter Jan 2012 #26
AllyCat Jan 2012 #28
RainDog Jan 2012 #30
Poll_Blind Jan 2012 #31
X_Digger Jan 2012 #32
TheMadMonk Jan 2012 #35
DemocratAholic Jan 2012 #36
lonestarnot Jan 2012 #37
woo me with science Jan 2012 #38
DirkGently Jan 2012 #39
PhoenixAbove Jan 2012 #41

Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:51 AM

1. Looks to be 9-0 with the concurrences...Scalia wrote majority, Sotomayor a concurrence....link...

 

http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/11pdf/10-1259.pdf

Shaping up, on the first read-through, a truly landmark case.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:52 AM

2. Finally, a good ruling by the SCOTUS

But you can bet your bottom dollar this will be viciously attacked by fascists from the people that brought us the Homeland Security act and TSA gropers.

They will work hard to undermine this ruling.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:59 AM

3. well, i'll be damned.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:59 AM

4. Wow! This is great but I am shocked! Never thought it would 9-0!!!

 

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 11:59 AM

5. Wow, this is big news, right? n/t

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 08:00 PM

33. yes, I think it is. nt

 

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:07 PM

6. Wha...?



I just *knew* that Thomas would throw out the 4th amendment but alas, I was wrong....

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:13 PM

7. Sorry, I reposted. I thought I had looked! :D n/t

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:13 PM

8. Excellent! I was so worried about how they

were going to rule on this case, so I'm very happy to see this. Finally, a decent ruling from this SCOTUS. Wonder how much they had to bribe prosecutors-and-police-uber-alles Thomas to go along with it?

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Response to liberalhistorian (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:38 PM

16. I doubt you read much of Thomas' opinions.

He is basically a libertarian rather than a conservative.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #16)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:59 PM

23. I have indeed had the misfortune of reading many of

Thomas's (incoherent) opinions, and he never met a prosecutor or policeman he didn't like, no matter how wrong and/or corrupt. And you could argue that libertarianism and conservatism really aren't that far apart in many areas.

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Response to liberalhistorian (Reply #23)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 02:46 PM

27. Scalia and Thomas have been a criminal defense attorney's best friend on this Court.

Scalia has always upheld the rights of defendants when they assert those rights. If the defendant does not assert them Scalia and Thomas generally back the police.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:14 PM

9. I have to admit that I'm amazed

I absolutely figured that at least two of our esteemed Supremes would come down in favor of this kind of surveillance.


Bravo to the SCOTUS for getting one totally correct!

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:17 PM

10. Good!

 

As it should be.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:29 PM

11. Well, strap me in a kilt and call me Sally-McNally

 

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:34 PM

12. Holy crap. Check out Alito's comment:

Justice Samuel Alito also wrote a concurring opinion in which he said the court should have gone further and dealt with GPS tracking of wireless devices, like mobile phones. He was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan.


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=145639480

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:34 PM

13. And Alito wanted to go further...

Justice Samuel Alito also wrote a concurring opinion in which he said the court should have gone further and dealt with GPS tracking of wireless devices, like mobile phones. He was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan.


That is encouraging.

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Response to MicaelS (Reply #13)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:36 PM

15. The ACLU should take him up on that. nt.

 

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Response to Warren Stupidity (Reply #15)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:41 PM

17. Damn straight they should, ASAP. n/t

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Response to MicaelS (Reply #13)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 03:54 PM

29. And Justice Sotomayor also wrote a concurring opinion for this

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=145639480

"The use of longer term GPS monitoring in investigations of most offenses impinges on expectations of privacy," Alito wrote in an opinion joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan. Sotomayor in her concurring opinion specifically said she agreed with Alito on this conclusion.



Very encouraging, indeed.

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Response to suffragette (Reply #29)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 08:48 PM

34. "in investigations of most offenses impinges on expectations of privacy"

"...in investigations of most offenses impinges on expectations of privacy"

Step through that phrase.

If you are being investigated for some offenses you do not have the same reasonable expectation of privacy.

What the Fuck? How can the offense you are being investigated for possibly affect your innate civil rights one way or another?

One can argue that a person charged with mass murder faces a lower definition of the constututional guranatee of reasonable bail.

But how could someone argue that being investigated for mass murder means that a cop can stick a GPS device on your car, though being investigated for something more minor he would need a warrant?

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Response to cthulu2016 (Reply #34)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 03:39 AM

40. Sorry, not the best quote to make the point that Sotomayor was also taking the argument further

than Scalia.

Good point from you about the Alito quote. Found an interesting analysis from emptywheel that calls it "squishy." Seems a good description. She also goes on in her article and in responses to discuss more about how Sotomayor goes further in addressing different technological methods that don't require physical placement.
http://www.emptywheel.net/2012/01/23/scotus-unanimously-declares-some-gps-tracking-a-search/

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 12:35 PM

14. It doesn't surprise me at all. They are just protecting their own turf.

Of course you have to get a warrant from a judge. Come and get them.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:20 PM

18. This will be one of the First SCOTUS rulings that

President Newt would just ignore.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:24 PM

19. Not a surprise. NPR had a piece during arguments on this case

I don't remember which Supreme asked, but the question was something like, "Does this mean you think you can place these devices on the car of a Supreme Court Justice, without a warrant?"

At the time my thought was "like bloody hell, fascist mofo's > 9-0 !".

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:29 PM

20. Good. k&r n/t

-Laelth

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:36 PM

21. wow, a major rejection of Bush 3 police state intentions. whatta relief nt

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 01:39 PM

22. If you've got enough reason to suspect someone, you've got enough to reason to get a warrant!

NO DOMESTIC SURVEILLING OR SPYING WITHOUT A WARRANT! CUE THE VONAGE THEME!!!


rocktivity

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 02:20 PM

24. Somehow Newt will warp this decision to President Obama being weak on crime...

I can just hear Newt in the next debate - Obama's Supreme Court gave a gift to criminals all over the country .....


Edit to add a thought : It was pretty damned stupid of whoever was running this particular investigation to not get a warrant. The few hours or even a day or two it would have taken to obtain a warrant was nothing when compared to the time that was wasted gathering all that evidence that now can't be used.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 02:32 PM

25. Wow, Scalia wrote the majority opinion?

I think Hell just froze over.

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #25)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 02:39 PM

26. The far-right hates stuff like this too

 

The problem is with the regular right (Bush types).

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 02:54 PM

28. This ruling is a good ruling, but surprises me.

This SCOTUS seems intent on barbequing individual rights. Glad to see it though.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 04:34 PM

30. k&r n/t

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 04:49 PM

31. I don't wonder if a few of those justics weren't visited by the Ghost Of Christmas Future.

If you know what I mean.

PB

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 06:15 PM

32. Excellent! Awaiting patriot act apologists in 3..2..1.. n/t

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 09:21 PM

35. Nothing surprising in this at all really.

 

If any cop with a bug up his arse could slap one on your car and wait for you to fall into his lap then it's no great stretch for a spouse or parent to do the same with impunity. A paparazo? Stalker?

And as someone else pointed out, it puts supreme court justices on the same level as any common drug mule. Also politicians, CEOs, CFOs, etc.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 09:24 PM

36. Obama Justice Department thinks it should be legal

I didn't see in any news reports what the Obama position was on this issue, so I did a search and did find a few articles which said that the Justice Department's position was that it was Constitutional and legal for the government to attach GPS devices to unsuspecting people's vehicles.

Oh well.

Can't exactly say I'm surprised as they seem to take the position of the police in every case. I would only say that this is a good example why it is so difficult to get liberals and progressives to coalesce behind Obama. Even in a situation like this, where the privacy invasion is offensive to the entire spectrum of the court, the Obama Justice Department sides with the police in favor of attaching GPS devices to cars without warrants. It is so disturbing and makes it so difficult for me to vote for someone who would support that position before the Court.

Wired.com - Supreme Court Court Rejects Willy-nilly GPS Tracking
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/01/scotus-gps-ruling/

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 09:52 PM

37. heh.

 

What is with SCOTUS on this. They don't want a GPS device put on thomas or scalia's cars I guess.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 10:11 PM

38. It is beyond the pale that the Obama administration fought for this in the first place.

It is very good news that the court slapped it down unanimously.

Keep fighting against the surveillance state. Occupy.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 23, 2012, 10:51 PM

39. Startlingly wise, from this Court.

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Response to MaineDem (Original post)

Tue Jan 24, 2012, 05:28 AM

41. Current SCOTUS and wise ruling? Shocked I say! n/t

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