Tag Archives: 4th Amendment

Off site interrogation/unofficial detention by American Law Enforcement.

The link appearing below is to an article outlining the alleged existence of a warehouse in Chicago that is used as an unofficial location for interrogation in which detainees are allowed none of their constitutional rights to counsel.  I know from personal experience that the concept of an offsite location was used by local law enforcement.  At least one witness in a case was asked to appear in at a warehouse for questioning on a Saturday night.  The warehouse was not even in the same county as the incident being investigated.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/feb/24/chicago-police-detain-americans-black-site

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Entrapment covered up by the F. B. I.?

The following is taken from the KCRA Channel 3 website regarding the Eco Terrorism trial of Eric McDavid.  The federal government was either intentionally or unintentionally in possession of documents that helped prove the defense’s case that McDavid was a nerdy kid who was trying lured into an alleged conspiracy to commit “Eco-Terrorism” through a romantic involvement with a female F.B.I. operative.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KCRA) —A man who was convicted of plotting to blow up the Nimbus Dam on the American River, in addition to other government targets, was ordered to be released from jail Thursday, according to the defendant’s attorney.

Eric McDavid’s sentence was vacated in federal court in Sacramento after McDavid pleaded guilty to conspiring to destroy a government institution, according to the U.S. District Attorney.

McDavid, of Foresthill, and two others were arrested in 2006 on charges of trying to blow up the Nimbus Dam, which lies on the border of Folsom and Rancho Cordova.

McDavid was convicted in that case, and his appeals were exhausted.

On Sept. 27, 2007, McDavid was convicted of conspiring to destroy various targets, including the United States Forest Service Institute of Forest Genetics in Placerville, with fire or explosives, according to the U.S. District Attorney’s Office.

McDavid was sentenced to 235 months in prison for ecoterrorism.

After his conviction and sentence, McDavid filed an appeal and motion attacking the prosecution on a variety of grounds.

That motion tipped off the government that some documents were unintentionally not given to the McDavid’s defense team during the trial.

Those documents were handed over to the defense soon after they were discovered.

The U.S. District Attorney said even though the documents do not necessarily show McDavid committed a crime, it could be possible that without them, the court would ask for a retrial.

However, McDavid’s attorney told KCRA 3 the newly released documents support the defense’s argument that McDavid was entrapped through romance by an FBI informant.

At the parties’ joint request on Thursday, the U.S. District court judge vacated McDavid’s original conviction and allowed him to enter a guilty plea of a lesser charge, which carried a reduced penalty.

The judge then sentenced him to nine years, which he has already served while awaiting trial.

The U.S. District Attorney said the government decided not to retry the case because both parties were in agreement because of the cost associated with a retrial.

http://www.kcra.com/news/local-news/news-sacramento/man-convicted-of-plotting-to-blow-up-nimbus-dam-set-free/30599962

You can also see a brief interview with McDavid’s attorney, Mark J. Reichel, at the following Sacramento Bee link.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gR6B0F9XR5o

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Isaiah Fowler Trial Update

The hearing held on Monday Otober 6, 2014 resulted in setting a hearing scheduled for Tuesday November 25, 2014 to a a new trial date. The issue of testing physical evidence continues to be central to the delays.

In the meantime, internet sniping continues and the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Dept. continues to leave its motor idling in the Norman Gresham murder case. In October 25, 2013 article appearing on http://www.mymotherload.com, Sheriff Kuntz was quoted as saying, “When I get back to work on Monday, I am going to get my Homicide Investigators together get a full briefing. If it’s what I’m thinking it’s going to be, we will probably make an arrest next week.” Now more than a year later and the survivor and uncooperative witness Jessica Elder claims to be out touring the country in a 5th wheeler and no arrest has been made. Not a mention in the papers and no one in West Point seems to care either.

In a September radio interview Sheriff Kuntz simply said that he believed his department is on the right track in the Gresham case. Apparently it is not an express line.

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US Supreme Court Rules that a Warrant is Necessary to Search Your Cell Phone

The US Supreme Court, in a 9-0 ruling, stated that a search warrant is necessary to search the contents of a cell phone.  http://www.cnn.com/2014/06/25/justice/supreme-court-cell-phones/

The article at the above link gives a good account of the history of the case and the court’s reasoning that even if the police validly detain an individual for something like a traffic violation, they can not then expand their activity to a search of his or her cell phone for evidence of other illegal activities in the absence of a warrant setting forth the particulars that are the basis for the need to search the phone.

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June 25, 2014 · 12:16 PM

How digital data can be obtained by the government.

This is a detailed article brought to my attention by the Reichel & Plesser law firm of Sacramento, CA.  It goes through how various types of digital information from your phone and a variety of other sources is accessible to the government.

http://www.propublica.org/special/no-warrant-no-problem-how-the-government-can-still-get-your-digital-data?fb_action_ids=10201227261140668&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_source=timeline_og&action_object_map=%7B%2210201227261140668%22%3A504185296270374%7D&action_type_map=%7B%2210201227261140668%22%3A%22og.likes%22%7D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D

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Should the government need to get a warrant to search through your E-mails?

The following CNN article outlines the current effort in the US Congress to allow law enforcement to search anyone’s E-mails without a warrant.  No probable cause required.

You may want to read about this.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-57552225-38/senate-bill-rewrite-lets-feds-read-your-e-mail-without-warrants/

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