Zack SpiraJanuary 16, 2018Constitutional LawMr.

Michael Questions:1.  (15 points).  Describe the facts and ruling of the Supreme Court decision in Katz United States, including the Court’s reasoning for the ruling, and also including an explanation of: (i) the then existing trespass doctrine and how and why it was rejected or modified; (ii) the two-pronged test that was articulated by Justice Harlan to determine when an unreasonable search has taken place; (iii) how the Supreme Court dealt with fact that the phone booth was made of glass; (iv) the significance, if any, of the fact that Katz closed the door to the phone booth; (v) how the Supreme Court dealt with the government’s argument that the search was justified because police had probable cause for the search. Mr. Katz was under the suspicion that he was sending gambling information over the phone in phone booths to clients in other locations. To prove this theory agents placed listing devices outside the phone booth. Based on the information from the microphones he was proven to be transmitting information over the phone and charged with illegal transmission of wagering information from Los Angeles to Boston and Miami.

He was then convicted under eight counts of illegal transmission of wagering information. Mr. Katz appealed and challenged his conviction. His argument was that the recording could not be used as evidence against him. The point was rejected by the court of Appeals and they noted the absence of a physical entry to the phone booth and he was granted a certiorari, “a writ or order by which a higher court reviews a decision of a lower court.” The Supreme court ruled in the final decision that Mr.

Katz was entitled to Fourth Amendment protection because he closed the phone booth door and assumed he had privacy. It was also ruled that the “fourth amendment protects people and not places”. Justice John Marshall Harlan came up with the idea of reasonable protection from this amendment. With this when someone expects privacy IE. closing the phone booth door they are under protection from the fourth amendment.   2.  (10 points).

 Describe the facts and ruling of the Supreme Court decision in United States v. Jones, including the Court’s reasoning for the ruling, and also including an explanation of: (i) how the Court dealt with the “reasonable expectation of privacy” test of the Katz case and the trespass doctrine that was followed prior to Katz; (ii) the different arguments expressed by the justices to reach the same ultimate ruling; and (iii) how the majority and concurring opinions dealt with the extent of a person’s reasonable expectation of privacy with respect to information disclosed to third parties such as cell phone companies, internet service providers and online retailers. Mr. Antoine Jones was arrested and charged with drug possession. But he was only found with this charge because the police attached an unapproved tracker to his car.

authorities then used the tracker to follow him for a month. A jury found Jones not guilty on all charges for conspiracy. The district prosecutors wanted another go at it so they filled a single count of conspiracy against Mr. Jones and his business partner was convicted for that charge but on appeal, the court ruled based on a 1983 decision that a tracker could not be used without a warrant. In a 9-0 decision, the court ruled that a GPS tracking device could not be fitted without a warrant because it constitutes an unlawful search under the fourth amendment. There is an expected sense of privacy while traveling in your own personal vehicle on public roadways. It was also referred that the fourth amendment provided the same protection on personal property. Justice Sotomayor said that the government achieved this information using Mr.

Jones property and invaded his privacy. She also added that “Fourth amendment searches occur whenever the government violates a subjective expectation of privacy that society recognizes as reasonable, which is particularly important in an era where the physical intrusion is unnecessary to many forms of surveillance.” Justice Alito also added that the amendment wording is confusing and it would be better to analyze the decision whether or not the government violated Jones privacy. 3.  (15 points).

 Must the police always obtain a warrant before conducting a search or making an arrest?  Must the police always have probable cause before conducting a search or making an arrest?  If not, under what circumstances may the police: (i) conduct a search, make an arrest or otherwise “seize” a person without a warrant; (ii) conduct a search, make an arrest or otherwise “seize” a person without probable cause?  In your answer, discuss the Supreme Court’s rulings in Terry v. Ohio, Chimel v. California, and Payton v. New York with respect to these issues and the Court’s reasoning for its rulings. No, the police do not always need a search warrant but in many scenarios they do. If there is probable cause or belief that public safety is at risk or the public is in danger.

Police do not need a warrant to search and seize forms of contraband in plan view or probable cause. In Terry V Ohio after the officer witnessed what was believed to be a “Stick Up” and then found weapons on them based on probable cause because they were just witnessed in an armed robbery and the search and seizure were justified because it could affect public safety. In Chimel V California it was ruled that police violated the fourth amendment by searching Chimel home because they overstepped the boundaries of their arrest warrant and they did not have a search warrant. The arrest warrant allowed the officers to arrest and search the subject but not the persons home. In Payton V New York it was ruled that police violate the fourth Amendment by entering Payton’s home without a warrant even though they had a belief that he murdered a gas station manager.4.  (10 points).  Discuss the facts of, the decision rendered in and the reasoning employed by the Supreme Court in New Jersey v.

T.L.O, including a discussion of: (i) the standard applied by the Court to determine whether T.L.O’s Fourth Amendment rights were violated and why that standard was applied, and (ii) the number of searches involved and how the plain view/plain sight doctrine was applied by the Court. T.

L.O was a public high school student and she was suspected to have cigarettes which were against school rules. The case was that the School Violated T.L.O rights by opening her purse without her permission or a warrant. It was ruled that school officials have the right to conduct warrantless searches of students belongings based on plain sight and probable cause. The search of T.

L.O’s purse was reasonable under the circumstances.5.  (5 points).  Describe the facts of, the decision rendered in and the reasoning employed by the Supreme Court in Safford Unified School District v.

Redding, including an explanation of how and why this decision differed from the T.L.O. decision.The difference between T.L.

O and Redding had to do with the type of search conducted and the cause of the search. For T.L.O it was a search of belongings but with Redding it was a Strip search which was out of line and unconstitutional for the cause of the search. Justice Ginsburg stated “it does not require a constitutional scholar to conclude that a nude search of a 13-year old child is an invasion of constitutional rights of some magnitude.” 6.  (15 points).

 Describe the facts of, the decision rendered in and the reasoning employed by the Supreme Court in Miranda v. Arizona, including an explanation of: (i) the circumstances that require that the Miranda warnings be given and why those circumstances require that the Miranda warnings be given; (ii) the circumstances under which a defendant can waive his/her Miranda rights; and (iii) what exceptions exist, if any, to the requirement that Miranda warnings be given. Mr. Miranda was arrested in his house and was brought to a police station and questioned. After a short while Mr. Miranda wrote a confession. But Mr.

Miranda was not informed of his rights so he wrote a confession without an attorney present. The Supreme court ruled that confessions without proper safeguards in place such as informing the person of his/her rights violates the 5th amendment and can not be used unless the rights are waived. The person must be informed of rights during arrest and they are called the Miranda Warnings.7.

 (15 points).  Describe the facts of, the decision rendered in and the reasoning employed by the Supreme Court in Massiah v. United States, including an explanation of: (i) the circumstances that require the Massiah to be applied and why those circumstances require that Massiah be applied; (ii) the circumstances under which a defendant can waive his/her Massiah rights; and (iii) what exceptions exist, if any, to the application of Massiah. Mr. Massiah was indicted on narcotics charges and pleaded not guilty. While he was on bail he spoke to a friend who became a government informer and while speaking to him he said self-incriminating information without a lawyer present. The person who listened to the conversation testified and he was convicted.

The Supreme court ruled that self-incriminating statements violated the 6th amendment and it could not be used against him.  8.  (15 points).  (a)  Describe the facts of, the decisions rendered in and the reasoning employed by the Supreme Court in its decisions in Furman v. Georgia and Gregg v.

Georgia, including, whether or not the Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty was a “cruel and unusual” punishment. In Gregg v Georgia due to the circumstances the death penalty was allowed because it was a murder and that constitutes the death penalty. But In Furman v Georgia it was ruled unconstitutional due to the circumstances. Death penalties have been racially biased so that also constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.  (b) In decisions subsequent to Furman and Gregg, did the Supreme Court ever rule that the death penalty was “cruel and unusual,” and if so, under what circumstances did the Court find the death penalty to be “cruel and unusual” and what was the Court’s reasoning for such findings? Yes in Furman it was ruled cruel and unusual due to the circumstances at hand and it also had to do with racial bias.

 

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