Select Page

Criminal Procedure
St. Thomas University, Florida School of Law
Garcia, Alfredo

Criminal Procedure Garcia Fall 2017

Class #1

The 4th amendment: Right of people to be secured. It protects people against unreasonable searches and seizures. It has 2 clauses:

Prohibits unreasonable searches & seizures.
Issuance of warrants based on probable cause.

* Homes should be completed protected from unwarranted searches.

State agents can use deception to get permission to search. Deception does not vitiate the consent.

The voluntarily consent is the exception to a warrant requirement b/c searches w/o a warrant is presumptive unreasonable.

*Arrests typically do not require a warrant unless (exception) the suspect is arrested in his/her home.

The 4th amendment protects “the people” who are (1) part of our national community and (2) someone who developed sufficient connection of the US.

A person who is (1) involuntary in the US and (2) being in the US for short period of time, they are not entitled for the 4th amendment protection.

It’s unclear if persons who are illegally in the US asserted societal obligations. In dicta INS v. Lopez-Mendoza, the SC illegally in the US may be entitled to the benefits of the 4th amendment in a criminal proceeding. Ex: A “tourist” who is here voluntarily but the short period of time may be an issue.

*Private searches: the 4th amendment do not apply to private parties. Private security agents are not state actors.

Private parties>>>State actors>>>subjected to the 4th amendment: (1) act at the behest or (2) commands state agents. Ex: Informants act on behalf and command of the police.

Private search >>>4th amendment >>>If the police exceeds the scope of the private search (subsequent lab investigation of evidence brought by a private party)

Ex: A Private party opens a box, never viewed the tapes, just saw the titles, discovered suspicious video tapes, and turn them the police. Then police viewed the tapes. The court held that the state agents exceeded the scope of the search. The scope of the search by the state actors was exceeded by viewing the tapes.

*There is no expectation of privacy in illegal things.

*Test: are the private parties acting at the behest or commands of state agents?

Burden of proof: the D must show that the 4th amendment rights were violates. The aggrieved party is the only one able to invoke the protection against unreasonable searches/seizures. The court stated that the 4th amendment rights may not be vicariously asserted.

The D must demonstrate REASONABLE EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY are searched or item seized. In order to have standing to contest the validity of the search/seizure.

US v. Payner (importance of standing), the persons whose rights were violated by the break-in of seizure of property (bank statement) was the bank’s vice president, not Payner. The evidence was admissible against Payner.

*The exclusionary rule: Suppression of illegally obtained evidence.

Part with standing who contest validity of an unreasonable search/seizures can have Motion to Suppress evidence direct and/or a derivative product of the violation.

The exclusionary rule is a remedy designed to deter violation by depriving the police of the probative value of the evidence. Exceptions:

Independent source.
Inevitable discovery.
Attenuation of the taint.
Good faith exception.

Class #2

Katz: W/t the 4th amendment prohibition against unreasonable searches is triggered. The 4th amendment protects people not places, knowing exposure to the public, in home, office, is not protected.

The twofold requirement:

A person must exhibit an actual (subjective) expectation of privacy and
Objective expectation of privacy, one that society is prepared to recognize as “reasonable.”

If there is no search, the 4th amendment is not implicated.

Never record a conversation of someone w/o knowledge of the person b/c it’s a 3rd degree felony.

If you expose your house to the public, it’s not protected.

Disclose info. to a 3rd party, White: When you give information to a 3rd party, you assume the risk that a person will be a government agent, he will record the conversation, and turn it over the government or simultaneously transmit the conversation to agents.

Smith v. Maryland (Pen registers): There is no expectation of privacy in information we voluntarily convey to a 3rd party, even for limited purposes.

There is also no expectation of privacy in the financial information we convey to banks, also no expectation of privacy in the phone numbers you dial.

Third party disclosure doctrine, voluntarily disclosed information is no longer private.

Internet Service Providers (ISP), can record, store information, such as the IP addresses of the visited web pages, content of the email messages, and text messages. People assume the risk that the information like IP addresses will be recorded, and revealed. If you convey information to a 3rd party even for a limited purpose, there is no expectation of privacy.

Ciraolo: Aerial observation is not a search. A curtilage is not subject to protection if it’s exposed to the public (viewable from publicly navigable airspace).

(Difference) Knotts + Karo, the beeper was not used to surveil private activities of home in Knotts, but was in Karo.

verifies facts provided by informant and confirms informant has told the truth about one or more matters.

Illinois v. Gates, discords the two-prong Aguillar-Spinelli test in favor of a totality of the circumstances approach to probable cause base on an informant’s tip.

– The two-prongs remain relevant under this approach but are not entirely separate and independent requirement to be rigidly exacted in every case.

– Rather than more relevant considerations in the totality…overall reliability of a tip by a strong showing as to the other or by some other indicia of reliability.

– Gates furnished guidance on the quantum of probability necessary to establish probable cause fair probability court noted the relevant question is w/t there is a fair probability that contraband of evidence of a crime will be found in a particular place.

– The court also mentions that the threshold showing for probable cause is a substantial chance.

Class #4

Whren v. US (Objective Test)

– It eliminates the subjective motivations of the police in determining the existence of PC.

– Holds that a seizure of a person is not subject to challenge based on “pretext.”

Rule: If objectively facts establish PC, the reason for the seizure is irrelevant, even if based on gender, race, or politics hunches.

– EP furnishes a remedy if seizure is based on race or other discriminatory grounds.

– Applies to searches that is, as long as, PC exist, the subjective motivation of the officer for the search is irrelevant.

In Devenpeck v. Alford, extends Whren by holding that when an officer lacks PC to arrest a person for the offense he stated to be the basis for the arrest but had PC to arrest the person for a different offense not closely related to the stated offense, the arrest is still valid. In this case, the officer did not have PC to arrest the D for violating the Private Act (stated basis for arrest) but did not have PC to arrest for either impersonating or obstructing a law enforcement office.

PC is based on objective facts and not subjective motivates of POs.

If I arrest you for a discriminatory reason and there is PC, the subjective motivation is irrelevant, the EP is the relief and not the 4th amendment.