Tag: warrantless gps tracking

Delaware Judge Rules No GPS Tracking Without Warrant

A judge in Delaware has ruled police may not use GPS devices to track a suspect 24/7 without a warrant. The ruling is based on Delaware's state constitution, which like those in many states, provides greater protection than the federal counterpart. In suppressing the evidence obtained from the surveillance, the Judge wrote:

"The advance of technology will continue ad infinitum....An Orwellian state is now technologically feasible. Without adequate judicial preservation of privacy, there is nothing to protect our citizens from being tracked 24/7."

Though police can follow a suspect in public, there are limits to how long officers can keep up the tail, whereas a GPS device never sleeps and "provides more information than one reasonably expects to be 'exposed to the public,' " the judge wrote....

....if no warrant is required for such surveillance, "any individual could be tracked indefinitely without suspicion of any crime. ... No one should be subject to such scrutiny by police without probable cause,"

There is a split among courts on the issue. While the decision may be appealed, for now Delaware joins New York, Oregon and Massachusetts which say a warrant is required.

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