Cases

United States v. Babcock 11thCIR 23May2019

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In this case, police in Stuart, Florida were notified that there was a domestic disturbance taking place in a camper parked at the residence of the defendant (Babcock). Officers were told that a female could be heard yelling “Stop, stop, stop.” Deputy Olson responded to the disturbance call. When Olson arrived, she knocked on the […]

Cases

US v Bradley   8thCIR   13MAY2019

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This case provides an excellent review of what is required to establish probable cause using anonymous tips and confidential informants. The court noted that the supervised, controlled buy is a substantial basis for the issuing judge to find probable cause. To read or download the full opinion CLICK HERE  

Cases

United States v. Coleman 6thCIR 3MAY2019

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This case had two issues. The first was whether probable cause existed for the issuance of a tracking warrant.  The second was whether the ATF agents violated Coleman’s Fourth Amendment rights when they first entered the condominium parking lot and then again when they went onto his driveway (which Coleman argues was his curtilage). The […]

Cases

Scott v San Bernardino 9thCIR 10SEP2018

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This case is an unfortunate example of what happens when a middle school assistant principal teams up with a school resource officer to implement their own version of “Scared Straight.”   A school resource officer arrested, handcuffed, and transported three middle school girls without probable cause to “prove a point.”  The point they proved is probably […]

Cases

BUNKLEY V DETROIT 6thCIR 29AUG2018

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Officers made an arrest of the defendant because they were ordered to do so by a superior even though they had no reason to believe they had probable cause to make the arrest. The court denied qualified immunity holding that just because the officers were ordered to make the arrest didn’t absolve them of the […]

Cases

U.S. v. Lewis 7thCIR April 3, 2019

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In this case a traffic stop for following too closely leads to a call for a K9 and a K9 alert leads to a search under the Automobile Exception. The search leads to the discovery of heroin and the driver (Lewis) is arrested for possession with intent to distribute.  Lewis argued that the traffic stop […]

Cases

United States v. Cherry   7thCIR   08APR2019

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The defendant went to pick up heroin from his supplier and was totally unaware the supplier had already been arrested and had agreed to assist law enforcement in order to get a “better deal.”  The arrest man (now a CI) provided significant information about how the deal was supposed to go down. With the CIs […]

The BLUE Blog

United States v. Lyles 4thCIR 14DEC2018

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On a hunch that the defendant was involved in a homicide, the police searched through four trash bags at the curb of the defendant (Lyles) home.  The search revealed three marijuana stems and rolling papers as well as an envelope addressed to the defendant’s home.  Armed with this information, the officers sought and obtained a […]

Cases

United States v Polite 8thCIR 6DEC2018

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It was a chilly Halloween night in Omaha, Nebraska when at about 2230 police in an unmarked car were monitoring an apartment parking lot at the request of the manager.  The apartment complex was known for narcotics, firearms, and even homicides.  The officers observed a group of about 20 people in the parking lot.  The […]

Cases

United States v Lopez-Zuniga 8thCIR 26NOV2018

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This case provides not one, but FOUR examples of warrants applications that are deficient in establishing probable cause and the resulting efforts to save the evidence.  The Eight Circuit held that the first two warrants were so lacking in indicia of probable cause that no reasonable officer could think probable cause was established and therefore […]