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GPS tracking

First Circuit Rejects Challenge to GPS Tracking

The National Law Journal's Mike Scarcella reports that the First Circuit, "while noting its concern about prolonged electronic surveillance, dismissed a Fourth Amendment challenge over law enforcement's secret monitoring of a suspect's vehicle." The appellate court concluded that federal law enforcement acted in good faith to use warrantless GPS tracking on a arson suspect's vehicle because they had good reason to suspect him of being a serial arsonist, NLJ reports..

Second Circuit Rules Warrantless GPS Tracking Was In Good Faith

Even though the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in United States v. Jones the law enforcement's installation of GPS devices on suspects' vehicles  are searches under the Fourth Amendment, the Second Circuit has reasoned '"Jones left open the question of whether the warrantless use of GPS devices would be 'reasonable—and thus lawful—under the Fourth Amendment [where] officers ha[ve] reasonable suspicion, and indeed probable cause' to conduct a search,'" according to The New York Law Journal. The GPS tracking of the defendants in the case before the Second Circuit was not done with delibrate, reckless or gross disregard for their Fourth Amendment rights and was done with reasonable reliance on court precedent before the U.S. Supreme Court decided Jones, The Journal also reports. So the panel decided the evidence related to the search was in good faith and didn't need to be excluded.

Third Circuit Will Take Up GPS Tracking En Banc

The Legal Intelligencer's Saranac Hale Spencer reports that the Third Circuit has decided to take up en banc a case involving GPS tracking. A three- judge panel ruled that a warrant was needed for police to attach a GPS tracker to a suspect's vehicle. "Prosecutors sought appeal on the issue of whether the police officers had shown objective good faith in their actions, which would allow the evidence they gathered through the GPS tracking to survive," The Legal reports.

Opinion: FISA Court Contradicts US Supreme Court's Privacy Jurisprudence

Yochai Benkler, law professor and director of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, writes in The Guardian that a ruling in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court contradicts recent jurisprudence from the U.S. Supreme Court on security and the constitutional protection from unreasonable searches and seizures. One of the most important implications of Benkler's argument is for FICA no longer to be an ex parte, completely secret court. Creating a role for an adversary to the goverment's surveillance requests has been one of the key reforms suggested for FISC. Benkler says that if FISC was adversarial that the U.S. Supreme Court's holding in United States v. Jones--that it was unconstitutional for law enforcement to place a GPS tracking device on a suspect's vehicle without a warrant-- would not have been ignored by FISC in a decision setting out "why the government's collection of records of all Americans' phone calls is constitutional."

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