Big Brother Is ... Tracking You
by Douglas Ankney
In these Orwellian times, the Detroit Police Department (“DPD”) has obtained a cell-site simulator (“CSS”). It’s a surveillance technology that locates and tracks phones by mimicking cellphone towers.
The DPD bought the technology for $622,000 and began using it in October 2017. From January 1, 2018, through October 31, 2018, the CSS was deployed at least 66 times—an average of three times every two weeks. The phone location information collected by the CSS isn’t limited to targets of police investigations but includes hundreds, even thousands, of innocent passersby.
“If you’re pinging my cellphone for my location, that’s private information,” said Michigan State Representative Peter Lucindo. “These simulators — it’s called overreach of the criminal justice system.”
The Supreme Court ruled last year that cellphone location data is private information, and law enforcement would generally need probable cause and a warrant to track someone through his or her cellphone or other mobile device. Yet some police departments, like Chicago’s, have reportedly used CSS without a warrant by misrepresenting the surveillance technology capabilities, truthout.org reports.
The Michigan State Police (“MSP”) also possesses CSS. Through public records requests, the ACLU of Michigan discovered that the MSP has secretly used the device since 2006. MSP claimed the CSS was “vital to the war on terrorism,” but the technology hadn’t been used in a single terrorism investigation as of 2015.
As law enforcement agencies across the nation use CSS, don’t worry if you lose your cellphone. The cops can tell you where it is—and where you are at all times.
More from this issue:
- Changing Perception, Changing The Law, by Jean Trounstine
- California Supreme Court Finds IAC, Vacates Conviction in LAPD Officer’s Murder Case (Again) – 36 Years Later, by Dale Chappell
- Ninth Circuit Opens Door for Savings Clause Relief, Recognizes ‘Actual Innocence’ for Mandatory Career Offender Sentences, by Dale Chappell
- Seventh Circuit: Trial Judge Violated 5th Amendment by Modifying Instructions to Allow Jury to Convict on Offenses Not Charged in Indictment, by Douglas Ankney
- Attacking the Guilty Plea: The Ineffective Assistance of Counsel Standard, by Dale Chappell
- Suspending the Constitution: Police State Uses Crises to Expand Its Lockdown Powers, by John W. Whitehead
- SCOTUS: ‘Serious Drug Offense’ Under ACCA Is Self-Defining, Match with Equivalent Federal Offense Not Required, by Dale Chappell
- Kansas Supreme Court Holds Threat of Violence Statute Violates First Amendment to Extent it Criminalizes ‘Reckless’ Conduct, by Dale Chappell
- SCOTUS: Advocating for Shorter Sentence Sufficient to Preserve Claim that Sentence Imposed Greater Than Necessary to Comply With 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a), by Douglas Ankney
- New York Court of Appeals Orders Resentencing Because Trial Court Relied on Testimony from Improperly Unsealed Record, by Douglas Ankney
- California Court of Appeal: Senate Bill 1437 Abrogates ‘Natural and Probable Consequences Doctrine’ in Attempted Murder Prosecutions and Applies Retroactively to Cases on Appeal, by Douglas Ankney
- Sixth Circuit: Cardiologist’s Right to Due Process Violated Where District Court Ordered Government to Not Disclose Third Party’s Expert Evaluation of Medical Care Provided by Him, by Douglas Ankney
- En Banc Ninth Circuit Provides Guidance on When Amended Habeas Petition ‘Relates Back’ to Original Claims to Avoid Dismissal as Untimely, by Dale Chappell
- First Circuit: Home Search Affidavit Failed to Establish Nexus of Crime and Evidence, by David Reutter
- First Circuit: Securing a Weapon Not Used in Offense Is Not Exigent Circumstance Permitting Warrantless Entry and Search of Suspect’s Home, by Anthony Accurso
- Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Reverses Murder Conviction Due to Insufficient Evidence, by Douglas Ankney
- Second Circuit Holds Denial to Proceed Under Pseudonym by Magistrate Judge Is Immediately Appealable, by Dale Chappell
- Fifth Circuit Settles In-Circuit Confusion, Holds Implicit Extension of Time to File State Appeal Tolls AEDPA Clock to File Federal Habeas Petition, by Dale Chappell
- Pennsylvania Prosecutors Cash in on Low-Level Drug Crimes, by Edward Lyon
- Former Florida Deputy Jailed for Fabricating Drug Evidence, by David Reutter
- Prosecutors Overrepresented Among Federal Judges, by Jayson Hawkins
- ‘Travel Papers’ and the Pandemic Patriot Act 2.0, by Daisy Luther, The Organic Prepper
- FBI ‘Assessing’ Black Americans, by Jayson Hawkins
- California Supreme Court: Refusing to Testify Insufficient to Constitute Accessory After the Fact, by Anthony Accurso
- Seventh Circuit: Unsupported CI Statements Insufficient to Justify Higher Drug Quantity for Sentencing, by Dale Chappell
- Ninth Circuit: Proposition 47 Creates New, Intervening Judgment to Allow Another Federal Habeas Petition Attacking Entire Case, by Dale Chappell
- Seventh Circuit Vacates Sentence for Failure to Explain Extreme Departure of Guidelines Range, by Anthony Accurso
- Coronavirus: Will Courts Continue To Operate, Preserving the Rule of Law?, by Austin Sarat, Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science, Amherst College, The Conversation
- Repeat Offenders May Be the Result of Different Brain Composition, by Michael Fortino, Ph.D
- Washington Supreme Court Announces PRP Petition ‘Final’ Upon Issuance of Certificate of Finality to Allow Tolling of Federal Habeas Clock, by Dale Chappell
- Hawaii Lawmakers Propose Transparency from Prosecutors, by David Reutter
- New Fingerprint Test Can Distinguish Whether Person Ingested Cocaine or Only Touched It, by Douglas Ankney
- Wyoming Supreme Court Finds IAC Where Counsel Failed to Challenge Prolonging of Traffic Stop After Citation Completed, by Anthony Accurso
- North Carolina Supreme Court Announces Defendant Can Forfeit Right to Counsel by Egregious Misconduct; Trial Court May Forgo Compliance with N.C.G.S. § 15A-1242, by Douglas Ankney
- Report: LAPD Engaged in Racial Profiling in Traffic Stops, by Kevin Bliss
- Fingerprint Analysis: High Stakes, Low Qualifications, by Jayson Hawkins
- California Supreme Court: Defendant Doesn’t Forfeit Claim for Failing to Object to Expert’s Testimonial Hearsay at Trial That Occurred Before Sanchez Was Decided, by Anthony Accurso
- Big Brother Is ... Tracking You, by Douglas Ankney
- Georgia Supreme Court Reverses Dismissal of Second State Habeas Petition, by Douglas Ankney
- DNA Contamination Threatened Conviction of Innocent Man, by Kevin Bliss
- Sealed Records Open for View, by Kevin Bliss
- Citizens in California Can No Longer be Prosecuted for Refusing to Risk Their Lives Assisting Police, by Douglas Ankney
- News Websites Rethink Using Mugshots as Click-Bait, by Dale Chappell
- Advanced DNA Technology Helps Free Innocent Georgia Man After Nearly 18 Years in Prison, by Edward Lyon
- In the Criminal Justice System, Big Brother Gets Bigger Every Day, by Douglas Ankney
- City of Grand Rapids to Pay Marine $190,000 After He Was Unlawfully Detained as ‘Illegal Foreign National’, by Douglas Ankney
- California’s Killer Cops, by Douglas Ankney
- ‘Constitutional Crisis’ Still Exists Despite California Supreme Court Ruling on Opening Access to Law Enforcement Brady Lists, by Dale Chappell
- Complexity and Lack of Standardization Makes Crime Statistics Less Useful, by Matthew Clarke
- Chicago’s ‘Despicable’ Red-Light Camera System Exposed, by Douglas Ankney
- New York Police Department Plays Loose with Freedom of Information Act Laws, by Kevin Bliss
- How to Clear Your Record of Marijuana Charges in Illinois, by Dale Chappell
- Could a Second Chance be the Answer?, by Kevin Bliss
- Wrongfully Convicted NY Man Freed After 24 Years, by Jayson Hawkins
- News in Brief
- Chicago Police Department Ordered to Release 49 Years of Misconduct Files, by Matthew Clarke
More from Douglas Ankney:
- U.S. District Court Says Rhode Island Department of Corrections Violated “Morris Rules”, Aug. 1, 2020
- San Quentin Had Zero COVID-19 Cases Until California Officials Sent Infected Prisoners, Triggered Wildfire, Aug. 1, 2020
- Harvard Prison Divestment Campaign Files Suit Seeking to Sever University’s Financial Ties With Prison Industrial Complex, Aug. 1, 2020
- Tenth Circuit: Deputy ‘Trying to Help’ Doesn’t Make Search Permissible Under Community Caretaking Exception to Warrant Requirement, July 15, 2020
- Report Finds NYPD Officers Accidentally Deploy Tasers 25% of the Time, July 15, 2020
- California Supreme Court: § 459.5(b) Prohibits Charging Shoplifting and Theft for Same Property, July 15, 2020
- Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court: GPS Monitoring Unreasonable When It Doesn’t Further Any Governmental Interest, July 15, 2020
- Seventh Circuit Reverses Denial of Motion to Suppress Because Police Lacked Reasonable Suspicion to Frisk, July 15, 2020
- Colorado Supreme Court: Warrant Allowing General Search of Cellphone Unconstitutional Violation of Particularity Requirement, July 15, 2020
- Kansas Supreme Court: District Court Failed to Apprise Defendant of Right to Jury Trial, July 15, 2020
More from these topics:
- Myth of Technology as an Equalizing Force in Criminal Justice, July 15, 2020. junk science, Police State-Surveillance, Social Media.
- FBI Provides Fitness App in Exchange for Users’ GPS Coordinates, July 15, 2020. Police State-Surveillance, GPS Tracking Device.
- Police Use of Robotic Technology Raises Civil Liberty Concerns, July 15, 2020. junk science, Police State-Surveillance, Electronic Surveillance.
- Sale of Clandestine Surveillance Equipment Available to the Government and “Select Clients”, July 1, 2020. Police State-Surveillance.
- This Is Not a Revolution. It’s a Blueprint for Locking Down the Nation, June 15, 2020. Editorials, Police State-Surveillance.
- Declassified Court Ruling Details FBI Abuses of Mass Surveillance Data, June 15, 2020. Police State-Surveillance, Electronic Communictions Privacy Act, Police/Govt Misconduct.
- COVID-19 Creates Opportunity for Big Brother in the Sky, June 15, 2020. COVID-19, Police State-Surveillance.
- Don’t Allow Government to Abuse Emergency Powers After COVID-19 Threat Subsides, May 15, 2020. Police State-Surveillance.
- FBI’s Long History of Squelching Political Dissent Under the Guise of National Security, May 15, 2020. Police State-Surveillance.
- ‘Travel Papers’ and the Pandemic Patriot Act 2.0, April 15, 2020. Police State-Surveillance.