THEY NEED A WARRANT TO SEARCH YOUR PHONE

Posted on: August 12, 2015 by in Criminal Defense
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Orange County criminal defense attorneyThe U.S. Constitution promises legal rights to every person in the United States, and all of us should know precisely what those rights are. For example, if you are stopped by a law enforcement officer when you’re driving, and the officer asks to search your cell phone, he or she must either obtain your consent to the search or obtain a warrant. In Orange County, if you are arrested and charged with a crime because of something a police officer found on your cell phone, discuss your case at once with an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney.

Many of us store a considerable amount of private personal information on our cell phones: addresses and telephone numbers, personal photographs, and even financial information. Police are forbidden to search your cell phone without your consent – or without a warrant – as a result of last year’s Supreme Court decision in the case Riley v. California. In that ruling, the majority of the justices determined that your cell phone merits the same legal protections as your residence.

If you are pulled over by the police, and an officer asks to search your cell phone, politely refuse. If you consent, anything discovered on your cell phone can be used against you in a court of law. Most of these incidents could be described as “fishing expeditions,” because if the police genuinely believe your phone has evidence they need, they’ll obtain a warrant. If you’re arrested for a crime on the basis of other evidence, the police may confiscate your phone until they have a warrant. In Orange County, if you are arrested for a theft or a robbery, a drug crime, or a sex crime because of evidence that was found on your cell phone, or if you believe that your phone, vehicle, home, or place of business was searched in violation of your constitutional rights, discuss your case immediately with an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney.

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