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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 98028 Find in a Library
Title: Electronic Tracking Devices - Following the Fourth Amendment (Conclusion)
Journal: FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin  Volume:54  Issue:3  Dated:(March 1985)  Pages:26-31
Author(s): J C Hall
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
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Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article considers several issues which were not clearly resolved in two cases, United States v. Knotts and United States v. Karo, in which the U.S. Supreme Court sought to determine and define the fourth amendment's application to the use of electronic tracking devices (beepers) by law enforcement.
Abstract: In Karo, a beeper was installed in a container which, at the time of installation, belonged to the Government. The Court held that the defendants had no legitimate expectation of privacy in the property at that time. The Court noted that the same would have been true had the property been in the possession of a consenting third party (an issue that had been left open in Knotts). However, in Katz v. United States, the Court held that the fourth amendment protects people, not places. The three general types of property to which beepers are most frequently applied include movable containers, vehicles and aircraft. The Court has held that searches of containers must be authorized by a warrant (the Federal appellate court has disagreed). However, it has not decided whether the installation of a beeper in or on a vehicle or aircraft constitutes a fourth amendment search. The Court must determine whether illegal installation of a beeper should result in suppression of evidence. The Court must also resolve questions concerning the appropriate standard for the issuance of a warrant, the satisfaction of the particularity requirement of the fourth amendment, the applicability of time requirements, and the jurisdiction of the beeper warrant. Included are 75 notes.
Index Term(s): Electronic surveillance; Legal privacy protection; US Supreme Court decisions; Warrants
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