Tuesday, August 06, 2013

US v. Underwood, No. 11-50213 (8-6-13)(Pregerson with Noonan and Paez).

Plagiarism can get a student in trouble, an author ridiculed, and in the case of a police officer drafting an affidavit, the evidence suppressed. Here, the 9th affirmed the suppression of evidence because of the lack of probable cause. The defendant was suspected of trafficking in drugs. A wiretap and surveillance led to a 100+ page affidavit supporting a warrant for probable cause. The search of man homes (15) found precious little, except a small amount of pot for personal use. Yet, there was one more site to possibly search, where packages were delivered three months previously. The federal agent had a state agent draft a probable cause affidavit for yet another house. The state agent copied verbatim the key portions of the federal affidavit, complete with the "I believe...." And "I observed....." This didn't cut it with the judge, who suppressed the evidence. The 9th affirmed, holding a lack of probable cause and no good faith exception. One just cannot copy with stating so and adopting or explaining.


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