Monday, June 17, 2013

US v. Needham, No. 12-50097 (6-14-13)(M. Smith with concurrence by Berzon and concurrence by Tallman).

The defendant allegedly, inappropriately touched a young boy in the restroom. Some police work with a video and credit card from a nearby Jamba Juice stand, led police to the defendant. A search warrant was issued for clothes similar to what the man wore who touched the boy, some other evidence, and then, bare-bones search on computers for child porn, because molesters like child porn. Child porn indeed was found on the iPod. Challenging the search warrant, the defendant argues that it was so bare-bones that no "good faith" Leon exception exists. The 9th found it does. "Good faith" is established because of the precedent that equates qualified immunity against a 1983 suit in a bad search for child porn with "good faith". Berzon grudgingly concurs because the precedent, but grumbles that the tension exists and she would decide differently on a clean slate. Tallman concurs, recognizing precedent, but on his clean slate, he would find probable cause because of "real world" connections.

The decision is here:


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