Can a police officer text off of a confiscated phone?

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Can a police officer text off of a confiscated phone?

Police officers confiscated a friend’s phone and they sent text and made facebook statuses off of it. They said that there would be a party at this kid’s house. Is it illegal for them to do this? Does this abide by the Patriot Act? If this is illegal, what law would prove it is or case?

Asked on October 15, 2011 under Criminal Law, Missouri

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If law enforcement confiscated a cell phone of a friend, it can legally do whatever necessary in order to protect the people of the community that they are sworn to protect including sending texts about a supposed party at a certain location in order to ascertain the status of any illegal activity.

There is no justifiable expectation of privacy when one receives a text from some person known or known. The recipient of the text message has no idea who actually sent the message and acts in response to the transmission at his or her own risk.

The police conduct that you have written about has nothing to do with the Patriot Act which is an act dealing wiith the security of the United States as a whole and its citizens.

The conduct you have written about concerning law enforcement is entirely legal.


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