Across the country, police are using GPS devices to snare thieves, drug dealers, sexual predators and killers, often without a warrant or court order. Privacy advocates said tracking suspects electronically constitutes illegal search and seizure, violating Fourth Amendment rights of protection against unreasonable searches and seizures, and is another step toward George Orwell's Big Brother society. Law enforcement officials, when they discuss the issue at all, said GPS is essentially the same as having an officer trail someone, just cheaper and more accurate. Most of the time, as was done in the Foltz case, judges have sided with police. 

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287 hits Rate me! Share Favorite | Flag 13 years ago by KikiPeepers

Should police officers need a warrant or court order if they want to place a GPS device on a crime suspect's vehicle?
Across the country, police are using GPS devices to snare thieves, drug dealers, sexual predators and killers, often without a warrant or court order. Privacy advocates said tracking suspects electronically constitutes illegal search and seizure, violating Fourth Amendment rights of protection against unreasonable searches and seizures, and is another step toward George Orwell's Big Brother society. Law enforcement officials, when they discuss the issue at all, said GPS is essentially the same as having an officer trail someone, just cheaper and more accurate. Most of the time, as was done in the Foltz case, judges have sided with police.

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13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Monday 8/18/08 - 4:46:57 PM EST (GMT-5)
yeah. i think they should get a warrant first.
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Monday 8/18/08 - 5:00:12 PM EST (GMT-5)
It's no different than tracking the vehicle by helicopter or by following. The GPS isn't being placed on the suspects person. I'd probably side with the police and allow it without a warrant.


13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Monday 8/18/08 - 5:19:25 PM EST (GMT-5)
CD makes an interesting point. I was against this being done without a warrant, but reading CD's response has made me completely undecided on the issue.
I like the idea, because it frees patrol officers up to patrol, rather than trail some lowlife, and it sure is less expensive than fuel for a chopper or patrol car.
Since it's not a search of the person, I guess I'd be OK without a warrant.
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Monday 8/18/08 - 9:30:06 PM EST (GMT-5)
yes
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Monday 8/18/08 - 9:50:37 PM EST (GMT-5)
I think so...but warrants aren't that hard to obtain anyways, are they? So it wouldn't hurt.
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Tuesday 8/19/08 - 10:09:02 AM EST (GMT-5)
you cant just go stickin stuff in peoples cars
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Tuesday 8/19/08 - 8:51:16 PM EST (GMT-5)
As Cupcakee said, it's not that hard for cops to get a warrant when they want one. Tracking a suspect physically is one thing. To simply mark them so that they can be found at the leisure of the authorities at any time or place is another matter entirely.

I might point out that the reason we require warrants isn't to keep cops busy with 'lowlifes' or somehow protect them - but to protect the innocent people who may somehow attract their attention. I realize that to about 50% of the country, the thought process is "Well, I don't think that I'll ever have my privacy invaded that way, so it's OK if other people are to make me feel a little more secure."

Remember what Ben Franklin said about that.
13 yrs ago, 9 mos ago - Wednesday 8/20/08 - 3:04:23 PM EST (GMT-5)
I think it should require a warrant. Plus, 1984 is scary.
But the fourth protects against searches and seizures, not tracking devices.



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