iOS app Android app

Illegal Search and Seizure

Oklahoma Continues Use Of Controversial ERAD Tool for "Highway Robbery" In Civil Asset Forfeiture Cases

Adam Banner | Posted 08.26.2016 | Crime
Adam Banner

Although Oklahoma is the state making headlines in this area, the Institute of Justice graded 31 states at D or lower, with only one state, New Mexico, making above a B+. Everyone concerned with their constitutional rights needs to be concerned with the technology used to destroy them.

One Day Soon, That Drone Overhead May Be Pointing a Taser at You

Marjorie Cohn | Posted 09.02.2016 | Politics
Marjorie Cohn

Given the significant invasion of privacy occasioned by the use of drones by law enforcement, warrants should be mandatory before using them for surveillance. And weaponized drones of any sort should be outlawed.

Friday Talking Points -- Free Ponies Getting Into the Weeds

Chris Weigant | Posted 06.24.2015 | Politics
Chris Weigant

The obvious choice for this week's Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week is none other than America's new Attorney General, Loretta Lynch. Lynch was finally confirmed by the Senate in a 56-43 vote.

Supreme Court Upholds Auto Stop With No Traffic Violation

Marjorie Cohn | Posted 04.01.2015 | Politics
Marjorie Cohn

The court, in Heien v. North Carolina, continued its steady erosion of the Fourth Amendment's protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. Indeed, since 2000, the court has decided 13 cases that significantly weaken the Fourth Amendment's guarantee.

Mayors Think They Can Avoid Disclosure Rules By Using Private Email Accounts for Government Business

Peter Scheer | Posted 04.13.2014 | Los Angeles
Peter Scheer

The public has lost patience with elected representatives who game the legal rules to avoid disclosure of information to which the public is entitled. We'll soon find out if the judiciary also has lost patience.

Woman Forced Into Illegal Body Cavity Search, Observed Bowel Movement: Lawsuit

Posted 01.23.2014 | Crime

What started as a random screening by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents quickly became an invasive, illegal body cavity search on a New Mexico...

Stop Searching People's A**holes for Drugs

Anthony Papa | Posted 01.23.2014 | Crime
Anthony Papa

The war on drugs is out of control. How do we know this? Look no further than the disturbing story that just broke about a New Mexican resident whose routine traffic stop turned into a 14-hour living nightmare.

College Girls, Bottled Water and the Emerging American Police State

John W. Whitehead | Posted 09.08.2013 | Politics
John W. Whitehead

What do college girls and bottled water have to do with the emerging American police state? Quite a bit, it seems. Public outcry has gone viral over ...

When Congress Voted Down The Fourth Amendment

Radley Balko | Posted 05.24.2013 | Politics

Earlier this month, President Obama nominated North Carolina Rep. Mel Watt to head up the Federal Housing Finance Authority. Here's a fun little nugge...

The Boston Bombing, The Right of Privacy and Surveillance Cameras

Geoffrey R. Stone | Posted 07.06.2013 | Politics
Geoffrey R. Stone

The practice of using surveillance cameras to record our comings and goings is ever-expanding, and will certainly expand still further after the Boston bombings. A central question is whether we do -- or should -- care about our privacy.

Florida v. Harris: Turning Police Dogs Into Search Warrants on a Leash

John W. Whitehead | Posted 04.27.2013 | Crime
John W. Whitehead

"The unspoken power dynamics in a police/civilian encounter will generally favor the police, unless the civilian is a local sports hero, the mayor, or...

U.S. v. Jones: Fourth Amendment Privacy Certainly Not "Dead," But How Do We Deal With It?

Christina Gagnier | Posted 03.25.2012 | Technology
Christina Gagnier

Privacy and its treatment in the civil context, particularly what society's view of the "reasonable expectation of privacy" is, will most certainly be shaped by society's use of technology and how it interacts with platforms like Facebook or Google.

Congress Should Resolve Location Tracking Questions

Sen. Ron Wyden | Posted 01.08.2012 | Politics
Sen. Ron Wyden

Today, the Supreme Court was asked to tackle an important question: does the government need a warrant to use an electronic tracking device to secretly monitor your movements, 24 hours a day?

Mike Sacks

Justices Consider The Limits Of Privacy On Public Sidewalks

HuffingtonPost.com | Mike Sacks | Posted 01.08.2012 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- The justices appear poised to go big or go home when it comes to protecting privacy rights against digital intrusion. Antoine Jones, ...

Politically Active Americans Facing Searches and Surveillance

Kevin Zeese | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Kevin Zeese

FBI searches highlight a dangerous trend: domestic surveillance of peace and other activists. Americans need to understand the context of these raids so they can work to stop the infringement of constitutional rights.

Poverty's Penalty

Christopher Brauchli | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Christopher Brauchli

Welfare recipients participating in San Diego's "Project 100%" are forced to consent to unannounced visits from the Public Affairs Fraud Division, trading their protection afforded by the Fourth Amendment for welfare benefits.

Legal Challenge to Arizona's Law Explained

Emma Ruby-Sachs | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Emma Ruby-Sachs

The fight against Arizona's immigration law won't be as easy as many suspect. This isn't because SB1070 is lawful or just. It is because constitutional protections in the US are woefully inadequate when it comes to institutional racism.

Body Scanners and the 4th Amendment

Mahawish Rezvi | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home
Mahawish Rezvi

For most Pakistanis, it is an insult to be included on the list of fourteen countries selected for additional security, when publicly the United States calls Pakistan an ally.

"Poster Boy" Of Immigration Enforcement To Be Investigated, Says He Should Be Commended

Dawn Teo | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Dawn Teo

PHOENIX -- The Department of Justice is investigating "America's Toughest Sheriff." Acting Assistant Attorney General Loretta King sent a letter Tuesd...

You Have the Right to Airport Harassment

Allison Kilkenny | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Allison Kilkenny

If TSA made the theft of a passnger's property an official policy, it would be considered illegal. However, it appears that many TSA employees are making this an unofficial perk of their job.

Hands Off My Laptop, iPod, Cellphone, Pager, Beeper, Flash Drive, Pocket Litter, First Born (OK, Not My First Born)

Alan Rosenblatt | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Alan Rosenblatt

Customs and Border Protection just released its new policies for searching and seizing laptops at the border.

Keep Your Hands Off My Laptop

Alan Rosenblatt | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Alan Rosenblatt

As it stands, Customs can grab anyone at the border, seize their laptop, and demand passwords and encryption keys as a pre-condition to entering the country. And who knows when you'll get your computer back?

Another Scary Government Program: the Government Gets to Seize Your Electronic Gear at the Border

Robert Schlesinger | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Robert Schlesinger

There's no legal difference between looking through your backpack and seizing your electronic data in the US. This is the stuff of the Cold War Soviet Union, right? Or maybe a third world dictatorship?