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Thread: SCOTUS rules Dog Sniff Unconstitutional

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    SCOTUS rules Dog Sniff Unconstitutional

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013...e-court-rules/

    The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police cannot bring drug-sniffing police dogs onto a suspect's property to look for evidence without first getting a warrant for a search, a decision which may limit how investigators use dogs' sensitive noses to search out drugs, explosives and other items hidden from human sight, sound and smell.

    The high court split 5-4 on the decision to uphold the Florida Supreme Court's ruling throwing out evidence seized in the search of Joelis Jardines' Miami-area house. That search was based on an alert by Franky the drug dog from outside the closed front door.

    SNIP
    While it doesn't cover all drug dog alerts, it is nice to see some headway in this area. Next will be to get this applied to to other things where the officer doesn't have a warrant to actively search and where it isn't some type of LEGAL checkpoint.

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    I'm getting a dog and have him ID politicians who are on drugs ...

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    "The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police cannot bring drug-sniffing police dogs onto a suspect's property to look for evidence without first getting a warrant for a search"
    Any bets on whether an "alert" gets to be used as the basis for said warrant? Since there's no way for a human to eliminate the subtle tells that inform a dog that its master wants a certain behavior, dogs shouldn't be used as the basis for a warrant.

    For that matter, how do we know cops aren't just rewarding the dog for an alert? Walk by some cars, dog alerts, gets treat. Eventually you could get the dog to alert any time they walk by some cars, even without a treat, since dogs are so willing to please.
    Last edited by randian; 03-27-2013 at 09:14 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by randian View Post
    Any bets on whether an "alert" gets to be used as the basis for said warrant? Since there's no way for a human to eliminate the subtle tells that inform a dog that its master wants a certain behavior, dogs shouldn't be used as the basis for a warrant.

    For that matter, how do we know cops aren't just rewarding the dog for an alert? Walk by some cars, dog alerts, gets treat. Eventually you could get the dog to alert any time they walk by some cars, even without a treat, since dogs are so willing to please.
    While I would not be surprised if that ends up happening ("we 'walked by' and the dog alerted so can we get a search warrant judge?"), that would still go against the ruling in this case imo. From what I can tell, a dog alerting on a house when one doesn't have a warrant to search said house would be an invasion of privacy and illegal search. If this wasn't the case then if taken to an extreme and x-ray vision was developed the government could try to argue that what they saw was simply viewable from a "public" area and thus not illegal (animal or machine, either way they are peering into an area where one expects privacy).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aknazer View Post
    While I would not be surprised if that ends up happening ("we 'walked by' and the dog alerted so can we get a search warrant judge?"), that would still go against the ruling in this case IMO.
    Perhaps the case is being mischaracterized by the media. They describe the ruling as forbidding "bringing the dogs onto the property without a warrant". Bringing a dog next to (but not on) the property and having it alert as the basis for a warrant to bring the dog onto the property very probably violates the spirit of the ruling, but not obviously its letter. So long as judges foolishly ascribe human motives to dogs (the alert must be because of training, rather than because it's looking for approval/affection or because it detected a tell) we can't get rid of bad animal searches.

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    Quote Originally Posted by randian View Post
    Perhaps the case is being mischaracterized by the media. They describe the ruling as forbidding "bringing the dogs onto the property without a warrant". Bringing a dog next to (but not on) the property and having it alert as the basis for a warrant to bring the dog onto the property very probably violates the spirit of the ruling, but not obviously its letter. So long as judges foolishly ascribe human motives to dogs (the alert must be because of training, rather than because it's looking for approval/affection or because it detected a tell) we can't get rid of bad animal searches.
    I don't think walking the dogs by would violate even the spirit of the ruling (if it is as reported). There is a legal difference between going onto one's property and observing it from a public byway. Going onto the property is automatically intrusive. Observing from the street may or may not be.

    For example, going onto one's property to look through the windows is intrusive. Walking by on the street and observing them through the window is not. Using infrared goggles to observe the goings on inside from the street is.

    Going onto the property for the dog to sniff is. Walking by on the street and smelling the waft of dope from the house is not. Walking by with a dog? I don't know. That is a question different from the one answered in the ruling (again, if the ruling is as reported).

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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I don't think walking the dogs by would violate even the spirit of the ruling (if it is as reported). There is a legal difference between going onto one's property and observing it from a public byway. Going onto the property is automatically intrusive. Observing from the street may or may not be.

    For example, going onto one's property to look through the windows is intrusive. Walking by on the street and observing them through the window is not. Using infrared goggles to observe the goings on inside from the street is.

    Going onto the property for the dog to sniff is. Walking by on the street and smelling the waft of dope from the house is not. Walking by with a dog? I don't know. That is a question different from the one answered in the ruling (again, if the ruling is as reported).
    Some good points. I would say though that using an animal to go beyond our senses, just like using infrared Goggles, is the same thing.

    Especially since we now know how easily they are trained to give false alerts. Any dog owner actually knows dogs will often 'pretend' to do things to please their owners/handlers.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    The cops walked up to the front door and the dog sat down. The signal for dope. Illegal search. Good ruling.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    The cops walked up to the front door and the dog sat down. The signal for dope. Illegal search. Good ruling.
    Agreed, and I think that while it wasn't specifically stated, one could say the same if the dog were to walk by on the sidewalk and the dog sat down. Both are "open to the public" but the INTENT of the cops was to use a piece of equipment (the dog) to do a search for something that they theirselves can't sense where they don't have a warrant to perform a search.

    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I don't think walking the dogs by would violate even the spirit of the ruling (if it is as reported). There is a legal difference between going onto one's property and observing it from a public byway. Going onto the property is automatically intrusive. Observing from the street may or may not be.
    But the thing is they were still on a "public use" portion of the land when the dog sat down much like if they were to "walk by" on the sidewalk (which then begs the question of why are they "walking by" with a drug dog if not trying to troll for evidence to get a warrant) and the dog were to sit down.

    For example, going onto one's property to look through the windows is intrusive. Walking by on the street and observing them through the window is not. Using infrared goggles to observe the goings on inside from the street is.
    Yes but as seen from the same article, even use binoculars is against the law as conceeded by the state "...From that vantage point they can presumably peer into the house with binoculars with impunity. That is not the law, as even the state concedes." And to me using a dog to sense something that one otherwise couldn't sense is no different than using some other piece of equipment to sense (visually, audibly, etc) from a specific vantage point without a warrant.

    Going onto the property for the dog to sniff is. Walking by on the street and smelling the waft of dope from the house is not. Walking by with a dog? I don't know. That is a question different from the one answered in the ruling (again, if the ruling is as reported).
    Though I would say that it was alluded to. The issue is just in getting the courts to rule that a dog isn't a person and thus is a piece of equipment. And as such one can't just use it wherever and whenever just to try and troll for evidence on either a group of people or on a specific person prior to obtaining a warrant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    The cops walked up to the front door and the dog sat down. The signal for dope.
    Why is that the signal for dope? Because the trainers want the handlers to have a reason for a search any time, any where, hence training the dog to make a completely ambiguous signal. Did he sit down to alert for drugs, because sitting down is something dogs normally do, because the dog expects treats/affection when he sits down, or because the dog detected a tell? Don't know, but apparently that's ok with judges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by randian View Post
    Why is that the signal for dope? Because the trainers want the handlers to have a reason for a search any time, any where, hence training the dog to make a completely ambiguous signal. Did he sit down to alert for drugs, because sitting down is something dogs normally do, because the dog expects treats/affection when he sits down, or because the dog detected a tell? Don't know, but apparently that's ok with judges.
    My dogs will pretend someone's at the front door because they know that's what they are supposed to do.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    SCOTUS rules Dog Sniff Unconstitutional

    Quote Originally Posted by randian View Post
    Why is that the signal for dope? Because the trainers want the handlers to have a reason for a search any time, any where, hence training the dog to make a completely ambiguous signal. Did he sit down to alert for drugs, because sitting down is something dogs normally do, because the dog expects treats/affection when he sits down, or because the dog detected a tell? Don't know, but apparently that's ok with judges.
    It is a passive alert. An active alert can tip off people. It depends on the training for the dog.

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    Quote Originally Posted by palerider116 View Post
    It is a passive alert. An active alert can tip off people. It depends on the training for the dog.
    Only if you can train the dog never to sit down for any reason other than "smell drugs". Is that possible? Otherwise what you have is bs: the reason why the dog sat down is entirely in the imagination of its handler. The handler, after all, cannot read the dog's mind.

    The worse problem is tells. Are cops happy when the dog gives them justification for searches? Yes, they are, and dogs are most sensitive to making their masters happy. Even if the handler has no other tells, and I'm not convinced that's possible, the handler's emotional state still guides the dog's actions. That's why you get so many failed searches. Dogs do things for animal reasons (please pack leader), not human reasons (training), notwithstanding our legal system's fiction that dogs can be trusted like people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by randian View Post
    Why is that the signal for dope? Because the trainers want the handlers to have a reason for a search any time, any where, hence training the dog to make a completely ambiguous signal. Did he sit down to alert for drugs, because sitting down is something dogs normally do, because the dog expects treats/affection when he sits down, or because the dog detected a tell? Don't know, but apparently that's ok with judges.
    You are asking the wrong fella.

    From the OP linked article:
    Detective Douglas Bartelt arrived with Franky and the two went up to the house, where Franky quickly detected the odor of pot at the base of the front door and sat down as he was trained to do.
    All we know is that the cops claim that Franky is trained to sit down when he detects pot. As you correctly point out, Franky could have been exhausted and wanted to rest.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by palerider116 View Post
    It is a passive alert. An active alert can tip off people. It depends on the training for the dog.
    When we go on walks I have trained him to sit down when I stop walking. I have also trained my Lab to sit when he detects a thug cop. Every time I am approached by a cop I stop when called and my dog sits down. Is that behavior a result of my stopping or that there is a thug cop very near by? I'll have to ask my Dog about that.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by palerider116 View Post
    It is a passive alert. An active alert can tip off people. It depends on the training for the dog.
    When we go on walks I have trained him to sit down when I stop walking. I have also trained my Lab to sit when he detects a thug cop. Every time I am approached by a cop I stop when called and my dog sits down. Is that behavior a result of my stopping or that there is a thug cop very near by? I'll have to ask my dog about that.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTHunter View Post
    If taking a dog onto the property is "an invasion of privacy" and "unconstitutional", what about the use of ifrared heat sensors (aka "thermal cameras") to see temperature variations that could indicate growing lights?
    Wrong too.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTHunter View Post
    If taking a dog onto the property is "an invasion of privacy" and "unconstitutional", what about the use of ifrared heat sensors (aka "thermal cameras") to see temperature variations that could indicate growing lights?
    US Supreme Court precedent for this situation was settled in June 2001.

    KYLLO v. UNITED STATES, No. 99–8508. Argued February 20, 2001—Decided June 11, 2001

    "Held: Where, as here, the Government uses a device that is not in general public use, to explore details of a private home that would previously have been unknowable without physical intrusion, the surveillance is a Fourth Amendment “search,” and is presumptively unreasonable without a warrant."

    http://supreme.justia.com/cases/fede...3/27/case.html
    "The Second Amendment speaks nothing to an unfettered Right". (Post # 100)
    "Restrictions are not infringements. Bans are infringements.--if it reaches beyond Reasonable bans". (Post # 103)
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    http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...ons-Bill/page5

    Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, nothing in any of my posts should be considered legal advice. If you need legal advice, consult a reputable attorney, not an internet forum.

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