Can The Police Take My Cell Phone And Search It?

Recently the U.S. Supreme Court had the opportunity to decide on whether police need to obtain a search warrant to examine cellphone location information held by wireless carriers.  However, the court declined to answer the question, rising the concern of how well wireless carriers protect privacy.

Why wasn’t a search warrant needed?

The United States had obtained a court order asking the wireless carrier to disclose location data from a suspect’s cellphone, without first obtaining a warrant.   They relied on a provision of the 1987 Federal Stored Communications Act, stating probable cause is not needed to obtain customer records.

In addition, the court recognized in Smith v. Maryland that a cellphone user had no reasonable expectation of privacy when dialing numbers.  Since the wireless carrier maintains them for their record, the user knowingly exposes this information regardless.

Should a search warrant be required anyway?

Given the progression of technology in the area of mobile devices since 1987, they have become more than just a device used for communication purposes.  In this day in age, cellphones contain a wealth data that could be private to the user.

Taking this progression into consideration, privacy should be assumed by the user.  A person cannot use the device without first having to share their information with the wireless carrier.  

This inherent problem should not be turned into a dilemma of whether or not to use a cellphone.  Thus, the burden to maintain a certain level of privacy should be on the carrier and not the user.

Protection under the Constitution.

The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution citizens enjoy the protection from unreasonable searches and seizures.  The user may voluntary disclose this information, but privacy should still be maintained.  Wireless users should not have to fear their private information could be released when using their own property.

Privacy concerns still remain.

The court may have had their motives for declining the case, but privacy concerns still remain.  Mobile devices have advanced over the years, and the law should allow for users to maintain privacy in their effects. Therefore, wireless carriers should have a higher level of privacy when releasing customer data.

Criminal Case Problems? Call today!

If you have a matter regarding a search and seizure violation of your cell phone, please do not hesitate to contact The Law Offices of Tina M. Barberi at (559) 447-1240 to discuss your case.  

Posted on
April 22, 2015
in
Fresno Criminal Law Posts
category
can police search my phone, cell phone privacy, information on my phone private, is my phone private, jail searches, phone searches

Speedy Trial Violations: Dismissals are Possible

Fresno courts must dismiss the case against you even if you are guilty when your rights are violated in Fresno with the right attorney.
Criminal
DUI defense lawyer enlists Gonzalo Quezada for clients accused of DUI, criminal or traffic charges.
Gonzalo Quezada
April 18, 2016
The government is required to prosecute you within a reasonable period of time, and when there is a violation of a speedy trial right, it is serious. See if your case should be dismissed when the district attorney violates the law.

Reminder to Reduce Your Charges Under Prop 47

See if you qualify for Prop 47 relief or an expungement for your felony case. Our lawyer will make sure you qualify.
Criminal
If you are arrested for DUI, get the best legal defense with help from Jeanne Slaven.
Jeanne Slaven
March 18, 2015
If you have a Proposition 47 case and you are eligible to apply, make sure to apply for relief. Failing to do so will result in your charge staying on your record and you will still be considered a felon. Don't wait, call us today.

Plea Agreements in Fresno? Avoid the Pitfalls.

How to plea bargain so you get the best deal possible for your criminal case. Best DUI and criminal lawyers know how to beat criminal charges.
Criminal
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
May 25, 2016
Plea bargaining is commonly used in the Fresno criminal courts by district attorneys and lawyers, but how do you know if it is right for you? If you have ever wondered why plea bargaining is used, do not miss out on this post.

Why Should I Bail Out of Jail in Fresno?

If you are thinking of bailing out of custody, retain an attorney first to save on the bail costs.
Criminal
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
March 4, 2015
No one wants to go to jail, but do you know what your rights are to bail? Find out if you are entitled to bail before you contact a bail bonds company in Fresno. In some cases, you may not even need to post bail -see why in this post.

Happy Veterans Day! Let's Celebrate Our Brave Soldiers

Criminal lawyers will help you when you are charged with a Drunk driving this Veteran's Day.
Our Firm
If you are arrested for DUI, get the best legal defense with help from Jeanne Slaven.
Jeanne Slaven
November 11, 2015
Fresno Police Department is patrolling this weekend for suspected drunk drivers in Fresno. If you are drinking during the holiday weekend, please make sure to not drink and drive. If you have facing charges, get help now.

Visit the Law Offices of Tina M. Barberi, PC

Fresno criminal, DUI, and traffic attorney, Tina M. Barberi, is dedicated to your case. Call today to find out how we can help you.
Our Firm
If you are arrested for DUI, get the best legal defense with help from Jeanne Slaven.
Jeanne Slaven
April 8, 2015
We are committed to helping persons that are accused of criminal or DUI charges in Fresno County. If you need help on a criminal case, stop by and discuss your case for free. We are here to help and will work hard for you.

Cellphone Location Data and Privacy in Fresno

Cell phone criminal lawyers Fresno will help you with illegal search and seizures. Need experienced advice in criminal prosecutions.
Criminal
DUI defense lawyer enlists Gonzalo Quezada for clients accused of DUI, criminal or traffic charges.
Gonzalo Quezada
January 16, 2016
Should officers be able to search your phone in Fresno? What rights do you have when it comes to your phone? Find out if your phone is subject to being searched by law enforcement and what can you do to protect your privacy.

Celebrate Your Boss on National Boss Day!

Traffic lawyer in Fresno is the best Boss and attorney. Tina Barberi will make sure you get great service for your DUI case.
Our Firm
If you are arrested for DUI, get the best legal defense with help from Jeanne Slaven.
Jeanne Slaven
October 16, 2015
National Boss Day is a special day to tell your boss how much they mean to you. For Tina, we decided to surprise her with a blog because she has been working so hard on her website and we hope she will enjoy it.

Caution: Don't Even Think About Driving with Alcohol!

Fresno defense attorneys that fight DUI cases understand the laws for DUI probation cases, including alcohol levels.
Traffic
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
May 18, 2015
If you have received a conviction for a DUI, it is important to not take it lightly. See tips and tricks for being on DUI probation in order to stay out of court and jail. You may be surprised how easy it is to violate probation.

How Much Does a Fresno DUI Really Cost?

DUI, traffic, and criminal cases are expensive, but with an experienced criminal defender you can save some cash.
DUI
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
July 23, 2015
If you are charged with a DUI in Fresno, it is important to know the fines and fees that you will be required to pay if you are arrested and convicted. By contacting a dedicated DUI lawyer, you may be able to save money. Find out!

I did not go to jail, does that mean I am not facing a DUI?

Driving under the influence charges in Fresno do not always result in you being booked in Fresno County Jail - see a lawyer immediately.
DUI
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
March 17, 2015
Were you recently cited for DUI, but the Fresno police failed to arrest you? If so, you are not alone. Many people arrested for suspicion of drunk driving are not taken to the jail for many reasons. Find out if this is legal.

Facing Underage DUI Charges in Fresno County

Fresno underage drinking and DUI are prosecuted harshly so get an experienced criminal defense attorney to defend you in Fresno.
DUI
Tina Barberi, DUI and criminal lawyer in Fresno will fight to win your criminal and DUI case.
Tina M. Barberi
April 2, 2015
Underage drinking and driving is prosecuted fully by the Fresno District Attorney. Being arrested for underage drinking or DUI, you must understand the criminal charges against you in order to fight against the conviction.

You Might Also Like