Let's Get Physical, Physical: Answering What Constitutes a Search of a Cellphone after Riley Through a 'Use-Based' Approach

Criminal Law Bulletin Volume 53, Issue 4, 2017

37 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2017  

Kristen M. Jacobsen

The George Washington University Law School, Students

Date Written: January 24, 2017

Abstract

Investigating and prosecuting in the twenty-first century requires that the government have clear and workable rules to determine what action constitutes a Fourth Amendment search of a cellphone. The use-based approach provides this guidance. The use-based approach, which will substitute for the physical trespass doctrine, holds that any physical manipulation of the cellphone or any act that requires, or prompts, internal action on the part of the cellphone internally constitutes a Fourth Amendment search. This approach prevents advancements in technology from eradicating Fourth Amendment protections, while the already-established exceptions allow law enforcement the latitude necessary to conduct investigations.

Keywords: Riley, search, Fourth Amendment, cellphone, cell phone, smartphone, smart phone, stingray, cell-site simulator

Suggested Citation

Jacobsen, Kristen M., Let's Get Physical, Physical: Answering What Constitutes a Search of a Cellphone after Riley Through a 'Use-Based' Approach (January 24, 2017). Criminal Law Bulletin Volume 53, Issue 4, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2952497

Kristen M. Jacobsen (Contact Author)

The George Washington University Law School, Students ( email )

Washington, DC
United States

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