Topic: Lack of particularity in the warrant to search cell phone improperly authorized general search.
Defendant Pamela Coke was charged with sexual assault on a child. The prosecution filed this interlocutory appeal of the trial court’s order suppressing: (1) evidence obtained from Coke’s cell phone; and (2) certain statements she made to the police before her formal arrest. After review, the Colorado Supreme Court affirmed that portion of the trial court’s order suppressing the evidence from Coke’s cell phone, but reversed the portion suppressing her statements. The Court determined the warrant at issue contained no particularity as to the alleged victim or to the time period during which the assault allegedly occurred. “Rather, it permitted the officers to search all texts, videos, pictures, contact lists, phone records, and any data that showed ownership or possession. We conclude that such broad authorization violates the particularity demanded by the Fourth Amendment.” Because the warrant authorized a general search of Coke’s phone, it was also unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment. The matter was remanded for further proceedings.
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