Skip to comments.License, registration and cell phone: Bill would let N.J. cops search phones after crashes
Posted on 06/11/2013 2:32:12 AM PDT by Libloather
TRENTON License, registration and cell phone, please.
Police officers across New Jersey could be saying that to motorists at the scenes of car crashes if new legislation introduced in the state Senate becomes law.
The measure would allow cops without a warrant to thumb through a cell phone to determine if a driver was talking or texting when an accident occurred. It requires officers to have "reasonable grounds" to believe the law was broken.
Supporters say it could be an important tool for cops investigating crashes in a state where distracted driving causes lots of accidents and driving while using hand-held cell phones is illegal.
(Excerpt) Read more at nj.com ...
CDL commercial driver licensed drivers ie truck drivers are already under federal regs on cell phone crimes. I should think that less qualified drivers especially (on NJz) should be behaviourially nannied too.
Can’t the cops just check with the NSA?
TO ALL AMBULANCE CHASING LAWYERS AND PROSECUTORS:
Supboena cell phone metadata from the NSA as evidence in any case you have involving a car and a cell phone owner....
Subpoena vs. subpoena...
I actually think this is a good idea, provided they are only searching for the time of the last call, and not whether you were on a conference call with the Heritage Foundation, Hillsdale College, Concerned Women for America, Tea Party Express and the Family Research Council.
Nothing wrong with states being able to enforce road safety.
What happens when they find evidence of another crime not related to the accident?
Refer to the Fourth Amendment.
It would be nice to know if a teen was texting when they smacked your bumper and caused over $2,000 worth of damage though. Happened to me a few years ago and yes she was texting.
Like I said, the law would have to exclude any evidence other than the time of the last call. Anything else would be inadmissible in court.
“Nice to know” doesn’t justify illegal search and seizure. Besides, if they need to know if the cell phone was active, they can subpoena the records from the cell phone company and determine perfectly accurately. No need to allow warrant less searches by cops.
What if the driver claims they don’t have a cell phone with them? Can the cops search the car and person without a warrent? What if the cops claim they saw a phone being used, can they search?
Exactly! A shockingly bad idea—no big surprise it’s coming out of NJ.
Cellphone data is used in court all the time, but it’s legally obtained via the court, NOT from some 86 IQ cop on the street stealing the cellphone.
Cell phone? What cell phone. I left it at home. Now they will search your car.
he can get a warrant if he wants to look at the phone
But then, if he has a warrant to search, the search can be wide. If, however, the law under consideration stipulates he can request the phone only to see if it was in use during the incident, then police can be limited to merely recording that fact and getting a confirming log of the time only.
I agree with your points.
I am also amazed at the number of posters on this forum so willingly give up my rights because it may benefit them.
There are perfectly legal ways to get the information wanted if and this is a big if, it is needed.
Because the legislature writes a law, does not mean it is constitutional.
Thank you for your post! Cellphone usage data is used in traffic accident cases all the time, but again, it’s obtained through court order. I can’t understand so-called “conservatives” on this site whom are all too happy to trample our rights if they feel it makes them, personally, 1/100th of a percent “safer.”
The Peoples Republic of New Jersey strikes again.
If a driver's cell phone records are relevant to a police investigation of a motor vehicle accident, then they can obtain a warrant to check those records.
It's really that simple.
As many astute Americans noted after the school massacre in Newtown, CT ... your misfortune doesn't allow you to trample on anyone else's Constitutional rights.
What happens when someone is involved in an accident and they hand over an old cell phone that is no longer active to the police?
This bill strikes me as like the use of GPS to collect taxes by miles driven. While it’s true that GPS info can be used to determine miles driven, it does so by recording your exact location every second of every day, obviously including exactly where and where you were at every single location, and how fast you were moving. The GPS data is vastly more invasive and intrusive than needed to collect miles driven. The odometer can do that. In fact, a gasoline tax also roughly does that, people who drive more use more gas and therefore pay more tax. (In particular, someone who drives none will pay zero such tax.) Searching your cell phone gives the cops vastly more information than whether you were texting at the time of the crash or not.
Keep in mind that I was reading it in the context of what I know has happened in New Jersey with law enforcement officers and cell phones.
A few years ago a young woman was pulled over and arrested for driving while intoxicated. They took all of her possessions from her while she was being held in the jail cell at the police station. Someone came and picked her up, and when she recovered from her hangover the next day she found something bizarre on her cell phone. Two cops at the police station had taken her cell phone into the men's bathroom and -- for reasons that only a New Jersey cop would ever be able to explain -- took various "Anthony Weiner" photos of themselves using her cell phone camera.
Yeah, the photos were on her cell phone when she checked it the next day.
Yeah, the police officers were fired.
No, I don't want any police officer f#$%ing around with my cell phone without a warrant.
Just a question:
Couldn’t a cell phone be produced that wipes the data from the device and possibly the account?
The fact is many LEOs already check the cell phones when there’s an autobile accident. It’s the primary factor that caused the accident. No need to make it a law for LEOs to be able to seize it during an accident anymore than they need to make a law for you to breathe. It’s clearly evidence of dustraction, inattention, and unawareness at the time of impact. But i do understand what you are saying; no need to make a law for this type if thing. The government us already legislating us to death under this administration though the low- inormation voters dont seem to understand the trap that is being lid or them. But you know as well as I do how those wacky retarded libs are about making rules for everyone else but themselves though.
There is no need to search the phone at that time. If the driver was on the phone the phone company will have a record.
Either we have a 4th amendment or we dont. Sounds like you are on the side of getting rid of it.
And you can bet your last dollar that the police will have, find, or manufacture "reasonable grounds" in every case in which they want to know what's on your cellphone.
Its weird how people focus on cell phones. I see crappy drivers all the time who aren’t on their phone. Some are putting make up on, shaving, eating, reading books, playing with the radio, sleeping, smoking and eating at the same time.
The fact is many LEOs already check the cell phones when theres an autobile accident. Its the primary factor that caused the accident. No need to make it a law for LEOs to be able to seize it during an accident anymore than they need to make a law for you to breathe. Its clearly evidence of distraction, inattention, and unawareness at the time of impact. But I do understand what you are saying; no need to make a law for this type of thing. The government is already legislating us to death under this administration though the low-inormation voters dont seem to understand the trap that is being laid for them. But you know as well as I do how those wacky retarded libs are about making rules for
I think there was already a Supreme Court case that said they could search a phone on any stop, if it’s “available to the driver” or something like that. In that case, locking it in the glove compartment made it off limits.
I would refuse to give them my password.
That would be the California Supreme Court, not SCOTUS.
This is where I don't understand the legal rationale of many of this bill's supporters. It's only "clearly evidence of distraction, inattention, etc." if the LEO witnesses the motor vehicle accident. Otherwise, he/she has no basis to make any determination about whether the cell phone had any relationship to an accident.
I once got pulled over by a cop who thought I was talking on my cell phone while driving. I was able to talk my way out of a ticket because I didn't even have my phone in the car with me. What happens if I'm a driver involved in a motor vehicle accident and my passenger is talking or texting on a cell phone when the accident occurs?
This proposed law is an unmitigated disaster, and -- as is the case with many laws in a place like New Jersey -- will ultimately end up being completely unenforceable.
That depends. Does the phone belong to a Demorcrat or a Republican?
The idiocy of this was made clear by someone who pointed out that a driver using an electric shaver would be breaking the law, but a driver who covers his face with shaving cream and uses a Gillette disposable razor would be OK. LOL.
Other than it being a constitutionally bad idea, how about the practical side of thing? exactly do they get an accurate timestamp? If I am in a small fenderbender and I call my wife 2 minutes right after the accident, how does the cop know what time the accident occurred? Could he accuse me of being on the phone with my wife because there was a logged call near the time of the accident?
I've heard of that, years ago in a history class. Wasn't that part of the Constitution back before Obama fundamentally transformed America? I have no problem with a warrant based upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing that either my cell phone or my cell phone records are to be searched, but otherwise my right to be secure in my person, house, papers (including my cell phone provider's records), and effects (including my cell phone) against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated.
This is yet another reason it is important to have a password on your phone.
Don’t know but I think that a little thing called digital footprint is the fly in the ointment. It’s that big NSA thumb drive thing that we built? Please note ( behaviourially) should be “ behaviorally” .
SARCASM! FOLLOWING SHOULD HAVE SAID SORRY. CDL commercial driver licensed drivers ie truck drivers are already under federal regs on cell phone crimes. I should think that less qualified drivers especially (on NJz) should be behaviourially nannied too.