On May 29, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the matter of Nieves v. Bartlett, Docket no. 19-1174. The central question was whether probable cause defeats a First Amendment retaliatory-arrest claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In a 6-3 decision, the Court held that because police officers had probable cause to arrest Russell Bartlett, his … Continue reading Supreme Court holds that probable cause can defeat a First Amendment retaliatory-arrest claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Today, Chief Counsel Joshua Prince and attorney Adam Kraut secured a major victory for Second Amendment jurisprudence in Holloway v. Sessions, et al., 1:17-CV-00081, where Chief Judge Christopher Connor of the Middle District of Pennsylvania ruled in a 21 page memorandum that it was unconstitutional as-applied to Mr. Holloway to preclude him in perpetuity from … Continue reading MONUMENTAL DECISION – Federal Court Rules It’s Unconstitutional to Strip Second Amendment Rights as a Result of a Second DUI
UPDATE: Governor Wolf signed HB 1346 on October 12, 2018 and it became Act 78. Today, Representative Jeff Pyle's Unlawful Use of Unmanned Aircraft bill, HB 1346, was signed in the House, after passage in both the Pennsylvania House and Senate, and is expected to be signed by Governor Wolf in the near future. This … Continue reading Unlawful Use of Unmanned Aircraft Bill to be Signed into Law
When an individual has been arrested and in the process his civil rights have been violated, he has the dilemma of navigating pending criminal charges and preserving any potential civil rights claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In Heck v. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477, 478, 114 S.Ct. 2364, 129 L.Ed.2d 383 (1994), the Supreme Court … Continue reading HOW DOES ACCEPTANCE INTO THE ARD PROGRAM AFFECT POTENTIAL 1983 CIVIL RIGHTS CLAIMS
On May 22, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an important decision extending the Fourth Amendment right against unlawful search and seizure into the digital age. In Thomas Ivory Carpenter v. United States, the Court sided with the privacy rights of cellphone users over law enforcement using private tracking data compiled and saved by cell … Continue reading The Supreme Court recognizes privacy right to cell phone location history.
In yet another victory for Fourth Amendment advocates, the Supreme Court on May 29, 2018 ruled against a warrantless search and examination of motorcycle under a tarp in the driveway of a home. In the matter of Ryan Austin Collins vs. Virginia, No. 16-1027, the Court in a 8-1 decision reversed the lower court’s decision … Continue reading Supreme Court declines to extend automobile exception to Fourth Amendment to vehicles parked in driveways or curtilage of home.
On May 14, 2018, the United States Supreme Court held that people who borrow rental cars from friends are afforded the same protections against unlawful searches as the authorized driver. In the matter of Terrence Byrd v. United States, 2018 WL 2186175, the Supreme Court justices unanimously held “ the mere fact that a driver … Continue reading U.S. Supreme Court Finds That An Unauthorized Driver In Lawful Possession of Rental Car Has A Right To Privacy
Today, in Fields v. City of Philadelphia, et al., the Third Circuit Court of Appeals joined five other circuit courts in holding that the 1st Amendment protects the public recording of police officers. As stated in the decision, the background is somewhat simplistic - Mr. Field and a Mrs. Geraci attempted to record "Philadelphia police … Continue reading Third Circuit Holds That Recording Police In Public Is Protected By The First Amendment
Yesterday, in a very short non-precedential opinion, a three judge panel of the Superior Court held in Commonwealth v. William Battle that a switchblade is not protected by the Second Amendment. As discussed in the decision, there is no dispute that upon entering the Pike County Administrative Building, Mr. Battle emptied his pockets, including a … Continue reading Superior Court Holds That Switchblades Are Not Protected By The Second Amendment
In a brief filed before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the Franklin County Sheriff has taken an eerily Orwellian position that he is immune from judicial oversight and cannot be held liable for his actions - even those explicitly violating state law. As our viewers are aware, on May 20, 2016, the Commonwealth Court issued a … Continue reading Franklin County Sheriff Contends He’s Immune From Judicial Oversight