SCOTUS to hear cases about warrantless phone searches that may also impact detained immigrants

Immigration advocates have long warned undocumented immigrants not to store contact phone numbers in their cell phones. They've warned that the call logs on cell phones, should the immigrant be arrested and/or detained by ICE agents, could be used to investigate the documentation status of anyone on the detainee's contact list.

Now the Supreme Court of the United States agreed Jan. 17 to hear two cases this spring that may impact the extent to which law enforcement officials can search individuals' cellphones without a warrant. 

According to a Jan. 17 article by Politico, lower courts have been split on whether the practice of searching cell phones after arrest requires a warrant. Rulings covering six states (Ohio, Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island) along with Puerto Rico, have said that warrants are needed, while rulings covering 20 other states have said they aren't (those states include California, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah, Wyoming, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Georgia, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North and South Carolina). The remaining states have no rulings yet on the books. 

Read the full story at Politico.

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