FLORIDA V. POWELL, PART I

As part of a robbery investigation Tampa police searched Kevin Dewayne Powell’s girlfriend’s residence. The found Powell and a gun. They read a warning to Powell prior to taking a statement. The warning said: You have the right to remain silent. If you give up the right to remain silent, anything you say can be used against you in court. You have the right to talk to a lawyer before answering any of our questions. If you cannot afford to […] Read more »

SUPREME COURT LIMITS MIRANDA

In Arizona v. Edwards the Supreme Court ruled that once an individual asserted his/her Miranda rights during a custodial interrogation the interrogation could not resume until an attorney was appointed unless the suspect initiated the renewed interrogation. Yesterday in Shatzer v. Maryland, the court ruled that the interrogation could resume, even though the suspect did not initiate the renewed interrogation if a break in custody of at least two weeks occurred between the initial interrogation and the resumption. In 2003 […] Read more »

SUPREME COURT RULES THAT THE NATURE OF THE FORCE NOT THE NATURE OF THE INJURY DETERMINES EXCESSIVE FORCE

The Supreme Court, yesterday, in Wilkins v. Gaddy reversed a Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal decision upholding a District Court denial of a habeas claim against a prison guard because the injury was only de minimus. The Supreme Court ruled, citing Hudson v. McMillian that while the amount of the injury might indicate the nature of the force used, it is the latter that determines whether the force was excessive, not the amount of the injury. In a pro per […] Read more »

GREED LEADS TO CONVICTION FOR INSURANCE FRAUD

Well I thought I had heard everything. Then I read about Mehran Baranriz who, with his wife, owned an automobile repair shop in Redwood City, California. He was convicted of insurance fraud. He placed dead rat in customers’ cars. Then he told the customers that the rats had done damage to the vehicle and repairs were necessary. He would bill the insurance company for work that was not needed. If he couldn’t find a dead rat he’d use mice and […] Read more »

TENTH CIRCUIT FAILS TO APPLY EXCLUSIONARY RULE TO ILLEGALLY SEIZED CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution states: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. Generally the exclusionary rule prevents the admission of seized evidence, the seizure of which does not comply with the […] Read more »

SEVENTH CIRCUIT UPHOLDS PRETEXT SEARCH

Jermario Taylor was driving his GMC Yukon when he was pulled over by Special Agents Dustin Brown and Jeff Martin for driving without a seatbelt. Now Brown and Martin were not any two cops. Rather they were with the Kankakee Area Metropolitan Enforcement Group, a drug task force located in Kankakee County, Illinois. When they stopped Taylor, do they give him a ticket and leave. No they ask to search his vehicle. when Taylor asks if he must give consent, […] Read more »

EIGHTH CIRCUIT FINDS CONSENT TO BE VOLUNTARY

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the conviction and 180 month sentence for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon in United States v, Kelley Kelley was convicted after a bench trial in the District Court for the Western District of Missouri of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Two burglars were interviewed by the Greene County Sheriff’s Department. They admitted being involved in a string of burglaries and said that stolen guns could be found […] Read more »

PARTS OF JAYCEE LEE DUGARD’S DIARY RELEASED

Prosecutors released portions of Jaycee Lee Dugard’s diary. Dugard was kidnapped when she was eleven years old as she waited for a school bus outside her family’s South Lake Tahoe home. Last year after spending eighteen years in captivity she was found and released. Phillip and Nancy Garrido have been charged with kidnapping and raping Dugard, She had two children by Phillip Garrido who are now 12 and 15 years old. Dugard’s diary shows mixed feelings towards the Garridos. At […] Read more »

NINTH CIRCUIT FINDS THAT INDECENT EXPOSURE IS NOT NECESSARILY A CRIME OF MORAL TURPITUDE

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that California’s law against indecent exposure is not necessarily a crime of moral turpitude. Victor Ocegueda Nunez entered the country illegally when he was fifteen years old. He is now 31, married to a United States citizen and they have three children all of whom are citizens. Homeland Security moved to deport him. An illegal alien who has been in the country for over ten years can apply for cancellation of removal unless […] Read more »

NINTH CIRCUIT UPHOLDS STRIP SEARCHES OF INMATES

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the blanket search of all inmates entering general population at the San Francisco County jails. In Bull v. San Francisco the court reversed a twenty-five year policy and allowed the Sheriff’s Department to strip search all inmates entering general population without an individualized suspicion or probable cause. The District Court denied the sheriff’s request for partial immunity finding that the searches violated the Fourth Amendment and that the law was clear at the […] Read more »