Police No Longer Need Search Warrant To Read Text Messages
Police no longer need a search warrant to read though the mobile phones of people it arrests after a controversial ruling by the California Supreme Court. (So here in Louisiana, we are safe ... for now!)
What would you do if police could demand to see your text messages ? Your email ? Your pictures ? Do you think this can help solve other crimes, especially when some detained criminals refuse to "snitch".
According to The Daily Mail:
When Gregory Diaz was arrested in 2007 his phone was taken from his pocket by a detective.
Ninety minutes later, a Ventura County deputy searched through the phone's text messages without obtaining a warrant and found evidence linking Diaz to the suspected drug deal.
Diaz pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation but he appealed against the search without a warrant and it is that appeal which has rumbled on because it uncovered a grey area in U.S law.
The latest ruling by the California court could now lead to the case being moved up to the U.S. Supreme Court for a definitive statement according to California Deputy Attorney General Victoria Wilson, who represented the prosecution in the case.
A panel of seven justices in California voted 5-2 that the loss of privacy upon arrest extends beyond the arrestee's body to include personal property.
Authorities can not only seize items but also can open and examine what they find, the ruling said.