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CB1

Police & geofencing scenario

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A department has a system, device, or something for geofencing. No warrant or anything is needed. They can track any device that has apps and see where that device has been up to the previous two years. They can even see this location information of their friends and family, innocent people who have never committed a crime. How is this possible? What companies could do this? How is this not a violation of constitutional rights? 

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23 hours ago, CB1 said:

How is this possible? What companies could do this?

 

These are non-legal questions about which you can conduct google searches.

 

 

23 hours ago, CB1 said:

How is this not a violation of constitutional rights?

 

Depends on the relevant facts and circumstances, none of which you provided.

 

 

22 hours ago, CB1 said:

I heard it from my cousin in Indiana.

 

Then it must be true.

 

 

3 hours ago, CB1 said:

Could this be a situation where the third-party doctrine allows it?

 

Please explain exactly what you think "the third-party doctrine" is.

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1 hour ago, pg1067 said:

 

These are non-legal questions about which you can conduct google searches.

 

 

 

Depends on the relevant facts and circumstances, none of which you provided.

 

 

 

Then it must be true.

 

 

 

Please explain exactly what you think "the third-party doctrine" is.

Obviously I’m not very knowledgeable on this subject and I’m looking for genuine assistance with my question. I gave all the information I have. I just want to know if it’s really possible police could have this much access or not and how/why it is or isn’t.

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2 hours ago, CB1 said:

Obviously I’m not very knowledgeable on this subject and I’m looking for genuine assistance with my question. I gave all the information I have. I just want to know if it’s really possible police could have this much access or not and how/why it is or isn’t.

 

As I wrote previously, it depends on the relevant facts and circumstances.  If you don't know any relevant facts and circumstances, then there's not much anyone here can tell you.

 

Also, you're the one who asked whether "this [could] be a situation where the third-party doctrine allows it?"  Are you saying that you asked that question without having any idea what "the third-party doctrine" is?  I'll tell you that, in nearly 20 years as a lawyer and 30 years in the legal profession, I've never heard of something called "the third-party doctrine" (hence why I asked what you meant when you asked about it).

 

As I and others have hinted at, it's possible that your cousin is providing you with bad information and/or making stuff up.

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2 hours ago, pg1067 said:

 

As I wrote previously, it depends on the relevant facts and circumstances.  If you don't know any relevant facts and circumstances, then there's not much anyone here can tell you.

 

Also, you're the one who asked whether "this [could] be a situation where the third-party doctrine allows it?"  Are you saying that you asked that question without having any idea what "the third-party doctrine" is?  I'll tell you that, in nearly 20 years as a lawyer and 30 years in the legal profession, I've never heard of something called "the third-party doctrine" (hence why I asked what you meant when you asked about it).

 

As I and others have hinted at, it's possible that your cousin is providing you with bad information and/or making stuff up.

The Third Party Doctrine states that people who voluntarily give information to third-party companies have "no reasonable expectation of privacy." It came about in 1979 in Smith v. Maryland. 

 

And the circumstances are as I stated: a police department has a system/device, or something for geofencing. No warrant or anything is needed. They can track any device that has apps and see where that device has been up to the previous two years. They can even see this location information of their friends and family, innocent people who have never committed a crime.

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Ok.

 

You wrote that "[a] [police] department has a system, device, or something for geofencing."  As I understand it, "geofencing" is simply the use of an electronic perimeter, with the ability to tell if someone or something crosses the perimeter.

 

However, you wrote that "[t]hey can track any device that has apps and see where that device has been up to the previous two years."  That's way beyond geofencing.  Also, what apps?  Who's being tracked, and why?  You also wrote that "[n]o warrant or anything is needed."  Says who?  And what does "warrant or anything" mean?  Anything?

 

You then asked, "How is this not a violation of constitutional rights?"  If a court has concluded that "no warrant . . . is needed," then that's a ruling that it's not unconstitutional.

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1 hour ago, pg1067 said:

Ok.

 

You wrote that "[a] [police] department has a system, device, or something for geofencing."  As I understand it, "geofencing" is simply the use of an electronic perimeter, with the ability to tell if someone or something crosses the perimeter.

 

However, you wrote that "[t]hey can track any device that has apps and see where that device has been up to the previous two years."  That's way beyond geofencing.  Also, what apps?  Who's being tracked, and why?  You also wrote that "[n]o warrant or anything is needed."  Says who?  And what does "warrant or anything" mean?  Anything?

 

You then asked, "How is this not a violation of constitutional rights?"  If a court has concluded that "no warrant . . . is needed," then that's a ruling that it's not unconstitutional.

I don’t know what your deal is.  Does picking apart every word a person says in an attempt to make them feel stupid make you feel better about yourself? I posted a question about a topic I know very little about in hopes of getting a real answer, not to have an argument with some stranger. 

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1 hour ago, CB1 said:

Does picking apart every word a person says in an attempt to make them feel stupid make you feel better about yourself?

 

I sort of got that impression too. In all fairness though, I think the picking was an effort to obtain more information on a subject that is confusing. Confused me. That you are relying on potentially garbled second hand information from your cousin makes it more difficult.

 

But you got me curious so I did two things.

 

1 - I googled Geo-fence and came up with a Wikipedia article that explained the basics. You can read it for yourself at:

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geo-fence

 

2 - I went to Google Scholar. Google Scholar is a search engine for appellate case decisions on federal, state, and local levels. At first I searched for Smith v. Maryland 1979. As you can imagine, the proliferation of Smiths and Maryland made that impossible so I took a chance and searched "Third Party Doctrine" and found State v Andrews 2016 that not only explains the "Third Party Doctrine" but, coincidentally, addresses the use of a device that you describe (Hailstorm) and cites Smith v Maryland.

 

The Andrews decision does not say that the device can be used without a warrant. It said that the warrant was invalid because it did not specify the use of the Hailstorm device. Evidence obtained from the use of the device was suppressed. This decision implies that the use of the Hailstorm device might have been legal if it had been properly specified in the warrant application based on probable cause.

 

4 hours ago, CB1 said:

The Third Party Doctrine states that people who voluntarily give information to third-party companies have "no reasonable expectation of privacy." It came about in 1979 in Smith v. Maryland. 

 

That's true. The Andrews decision summarizes the Smith decision. In Smith the court ruled that Smith had no expectation of privacy when he voluntarily gave his phone numbers to his phone service thus making his calling history subject to subpoena without warrant which is the gathering of information that is already out there just as your banking history can be subpoenaed without a warrant. Thus the Third Party Doctrine did apply to Smith.

 

In Andrews, the Hailstorm device detected a location signal when Andrews' phone was off. This signal was involuntarily produced. Other methods of location were specified in the warrant but the Hailstorm device was not. The court refused to accept the Third Party Doctrine in the Andrews case.

 

Please read the entire Andrews case. It explains a lot.

 

https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=1497704794265970679&q=third+party+doctrine&hl=en&as_sdt=4,21

 

By the way, your fear that we all live in fishbowls with no privacy is well founded.

 

Try googling your own name on the internet. You may be astounding about what's already out there about you.

 

 

 

 

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11 hours ago, adjusterjack said:

 

I sort of got that impression too. In all fairness though, I think the picking was an effort to obtain more information on a subject that is confusing. Confused me. That you are relying on potentially garbled second hand information from your cousin makes it more difficult.

 

But you got me curious so I did two things.

 

1 - I googled Geo-fence and came up with a Wikipedia article that explained the basics. You can read it for yourself at:

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geo-fence

 

2 - I went to Google Scholar. Google Scholar is a search engine for appellate case decisions on federal, state, and local levels. At first I searched for Smith v. Maryland 1979. As you can imagine, the proliferation of Smiths and Maryland made that impossible so I took a chance and searched "Third Party Doctrine" and found State v Andrews 2016 that not only explains the "Third Party Doctrine" but, coincidentally, addresses the use of a device that you describe (Hailstorm) and cites Smith v Maryland.

 

The Andrews decision does not say that the device can be used without a warrant. It said that the warrant was invalid because it did not specify the use of the Hailstorm device. Evidence obtained from the use of the device was suppressed. This decision implies that the use of the Hailstorm device might have been legal if it had been properly specified in the warrant application based on probable cause.

 

 

That's true. The Andrews decision summarizes the Smith decision. In Smith the court ruled that Smith had no expectation of privacy when he voluntarily gave his phone numbers to his phone service thus making his calling history subject to subpoena without warrant which is the gathering of information that is already out there just as your banking history can be subpoenaed without a warrant. Thus the Third Party Doctrine did apply to Smith.

 

In Andrews, the Hailstorm device detected a location signal when Andrews' phone was off. This signal was involuntarily produced. Other methods of location were specified in the warrant but the Hailstorm device was not. The court refused to accept the Third Party Doctrine in the Andrews case.

 

Please read the entire Andrews case. It explains a lot.

 

https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=1497704794265970679&q=third+party+doctrine&hl=en&as_sdt=4,21

 

By the way, your fear that we all live in fishbowls with no privacy is well founded.

 

Try googling your own name on the internet. You may be astounding about what's already out there about you.

 

 

 

 

 

11 hours ago, adjusterjack said:

second

 

I contacted my cousin. He said the police can put a geofence around a house, see what devices are there, and see a map of where that device has been, even outside the geofence 

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14 hours ago, CB1 said:

Does picking apart every word a person says in an attempt to make them feel stupid make you feel better about yourself?

 

I did not "pick[] apart every word."  Nor was anything I wrote written with the intent of making you feel stupid.  If you feel stupid, that's your problem, not mine.  We have only one way of communicating on here:  by the written word.  I've tried to figure out what exactly is happening in an effort to give you some legal insight.  However, you seem incapable or unwilling to explain the situation any better, so I'm done wasting my time with you.

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2 hours ago, CB1 said:

I contacted my cousin. He said the police can put a geofence around a house, see what devices are there, and see a map of where that device has been, even outside the geofence 

 

What, exactly, is your cousin's expertise in this matter?

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6 hours ago, PayrollHRGuy said:

 

What, exactly, is your cousin's expertise in this matter?

None really. He’s just a friend of a cop. His buddy was mad he told me about this otherwise I would just as him.

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10 hours ago, CB1 said:

 

 

I contacted my cousin. He said the police can put a geofence around a house, see what devices are there, and see a map of where that device has been, even outside the geofence 

 

The word "can" denotes the ability to do something not whether it's done rightly or wrongly. The police certainly CAN do all of that but if they do it without a warrant (as in the Andrews case) any evidence that was obtained could be suppressed.

 

2 hours ago, CB1 said:

He’s just a friend of a cop

 

His friend may just be stringing him along. Heck, I tell people all the time that I'm related to a famous baseball player. I'm not. But I tell a convincing story and they walk away believing me.

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