Keeping Up with the Joneses: The End of Police-Centric Justifications for the Third-Party Doctrine
3 Pages Posted: 4 Jun 2012 Last revised: 24 Aug 2012
Date Written: June 3, 2012
I write this essay to make a very narrow point: Justice Sotomayor’s and Justice Alito’s concurring opinions in the Supreme Court’s recent decision in United States v. Jones seem to suggest that there are at least five votes on the Court for the proposition that the third-party doctrine of the Fourth Amendment cannot be justified by initial or primary reference to the needs of the police. The concurring opinions in Jones suggest that the initial inquiry in any Fourth Amendment search case, particularly those involving a third party, must instead address the objective privacy interests of society’s innocent citizens.
Keywords: Fourth Amendment, privacy
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