News

Do Police Need a Search Warrant to See Your Phone?

Do Police Need a Search Warrant to See Your Phone?

Can police officers examine a person’s cell phone if they don’t have a search warrant? That’s the question on which the U.S. Supreme Court is set to make a decision sometime this month.

Some Illinois police departments are already asking for warrants if they feel a need to search a phone for evidence of a crime, says Sgt. Mark Folkenroth of the Quincy Police.

“It’s still kind of up in the air. It’s really a gray area in law enforcement, so if we get a search warrant, we’re pretty much guaranteed that what we’re doing is legitimate,” he said.

He says he always gets a warrant before searching someone’s phone, to ensure that any evidence found will be admissible in court.

Privacy advocates believe that cops searching phones without a warrant is an invasion of privacy, because the phones contain or have access to banking records, e-mails, videos and pictures.

The Supreme Court justices are expected to decide the issue by the end of this month. The cases are United States vs. Wurie and Riley vs. California.

Recent Headlines

in Local

City Council Green Lights Magro’s off Stevenson Dr.

Fresh
municipalcenter

Aldermen approved the variance on a 9-1 vote, Ward 3 Alderman Doris Turner was the lone no vote.

in Local

Eastbound Monroe St. Reduced by Capitol

road construction

Public Works says multiple service valves have broken and they need to be repaired.

in Local

Portions of Chatham Under Boil Order

water

Residents and businesses in the area on West Walnut St. from Route 4 to College might experience low water pressure or no water pressure at all.

in Election 2014, Local

Barr, Regan Agree to Sheriff’s Race Debate on WTAX Oct. 31

sangamon county sheriff

The two candidates have sparred back and forth in recent weeks through press releases and, in some cases, have cancelled other debates due to perceived hostilities.