The 4th Amendment: The Fourth Amendment In The United States

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David Leon Riley was arrested on August 22, 2009 for having possession of firearms. Under Chimel and Robinson, police officers were allowed to search his person and the area around him for potential weapons or possible evidence that could be destroyed without a warrant. Before Riley vs. California this also included his cell phone. Through looking at his cell phone, the police officers found photos and videos of him associated with a gang and they tied him to a shooting of a rival gang weeks prior (Riley v. California). Technology is a rapid force that is changing the very ideals of modern life. Cell phones now contain more information than anything has before and for many people it contains who they are. Many charges have been based solely…show more content…
Const. am. 4.). The fourth amendment is the first line of protection against any warrantless searches. While this amendment doesn’t include anything in digital nature, it implies the right to privacy which has been mandated by the Supreme Court. Now there are two exceptions to the fourth amendment’s search and seizure rule. In Chimel vs California it was mandated by the Supreme Court that “an arresting officer may search the arrestee 's person to discover and remove weapons and to seize evidence to prevent its concealment or destruction, and may search the area ‘within the immediate control’ of the person arrested, meaning the area from which he might gain possession of a weapon or destructible…show more content…
People carry more information in their cell phones than they have ever had before. In the pre-digital era, people would only carry a few pictures and possibly some notes. Now people carry thousands of messages, hundreds of pictures and videos each with a GPS tracker, apps explaining their interests, and even search history. No one in the pre-digital era would carry anything to this degree. “You have a rule of law that was established in the pre-digital era and now you have to apply it in the digital era…” (Justice Alito, Riley v. California). This kind of information would originally only be found in a person’s house which a police officer would need a warrant to access. Now that information has become more portable, it is not protected under the fourth amendment? Even if the police officers swore that they would only look up information on the phone that was relevant to the arrest. A argument could be made that anything on the cell phone could be related to the crime like how much they have access their banking app, or what have they been searching in their search history, GPS locations on photos or videos, and even a fitness app that kept track of how many steps a person took in that day. Police officers would be going on fishing expeditions through the cell phone and completely invade the

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