In a recent Supreme Court ruling, police are now required to obtain a search warrant in order to search a suspect’s cell phone. Moving in favor of privacy rights, the decision came unanimously and went against other agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Justice, who favored having more search rights over arrested suspects.
Why was the decision made?
While police are still allowed to search wallets, briefcases, and cars, your cell phone falls in a different category, according to the ruling. The issue was brought to the Supreme Court by two separate cases, both involving their cell phones being searched without a warrant. While one of the cases involved a simple flip phone, the other was a smartphone producing photos potentially linking the suspect in part to the crime.
What does the ruling mean?
The new ruling from the Supreme Court means a change in your personal rights when it comes to your privacy. While police may still be able to search your cell phone without a warrant with reasonable cause, it will protect your personal privacy more.
If you want to know more about your personal rights in the instance of arrests, contact an attorney at O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss. Their experience and legal knowledge will give you the answers you need to protect yourself.