4th Amendment cell phone search cases headed to the SC? Yes, please.

Who doesn’t love a good albeit tricky 4th Amendment search-and-seizure case?  Certainly not us.  We’re still reeling after the U.S. v. Jones (GPS) case and starved for another.  This great introspective from Jeff Wilty at the UNC School of Government highlights two cases that, if granted certiorari, would have the SC answering questions about whether evidence gained from police searches of cellular phones violates the 4th Amendment’s prohibition of unreasonable searches and seizures.

Here’s a snapshot of a case out of Boston (U.S. v. Wurie):

“A Boston officer arrested the defendant for a hand-to-hand drug sale. Shortly after the arrest, officers opened the defendant’s cell phone and reviewed the call log. They noted a phone number in the call log was listed as “my house,” and used an online directory to match the phone number with a physical address. That led the officers to search the residence, where they found drugs and a gun. The defendant was charged in federal court with drug and firearms offenses and moved to suppress, arguing that the officers were not entitled to search his cell phone incident to his arrest, and that the search of the residence was the fruit of that poisonous tree. The district court judge denied the motion, the defendant was convicted, and he appealed.”

Wurie filed a petition for certiorari on August 15.  Wilty’s going to stay tuned, and so are we.  In the mean time, read that latest “breaking” news about Justice Kagan’s hunting trip with Justice Scalia here. [Let’s get this term started already.  Am I right?!]

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