Brown v. Battle Creek Police Department, No. 16-1575 (6th Cir. 2016)-The court held: A police officer's use of deadly force against a dog while executing a warrant to search a home for illegal drug activity is reasonable under the Fourth Amendment when, given the totality of the circumstances and viewed from the perspective of an objectively reasonable officer, the dog poses an imminent threat to the officer's safety.
United States v. Gilliam, No. 15-387 (2nd Cir. 2016)-Gilliam took a minor female from Maryland to New York City for prostitution. The girl's foster mother reported her missing. The police asked the cellphone service provider for the GPS location of Gilliam's phone without a warrant. The officer claimed that the child was taken out of state for prostitution and was a serious risk of abuse and assault creating exigent circumstances. The court agreed that there was sufficient information to lead the officer to believe exigent circumstances existed and the warrantless obtaining of the suspect's cellphone location through GPS was justified.
Liverman v. City of Petersburg, No. 15-2207 (4th Cir. 2016)-Officers were discussing on Facebook about problems they were observing in their department. They discussed their concerns about promoting "green" officers to supervisory positions, and placing rookies in special units, and as FTO's and instructors when they lack the knowledge and experience to be in those positions. The Chief found that the officers were in violation of department policy. Each were given reprimands and placed on 6 months probation. They sued. The court held that the officers were discussing matters of public importance and their speech was protected under the First Amendment.
Use of Force involving Flash-Bangs-
United States v. Myers, 106 F.3d 936 (10th Cir. 1997)-Officers used a flash-bang during the execution of a search warrant at Myer's residence. Myers had a history of drug trafficking, fire-bombing, and possession of a firearm. Myer's wife and children were in the home. The court held that the use of the flash-bang was reasonable under the circumstances. The court did have concern about using the flash-bang with children in the home.
Boyd v. Benton County, 374 F.3d 773 (9th Cir. 2004)-It is not reasonable to use a flash-bang device under the Fourth Amendment by throwing it blindly into a room occupied by several innocent sleeping bystanders absent a strong governmental interest. In this case officers threw a flash-bang device in a room where Boyd was sleeping on the floor. The device went off next to her burning her arm.
Before deploying a flash-bang, the officer needs to-
1. Weigh the severity of the threat.
2. Look at the deployment area to minimize injury.
3. Give a warning where possible.
US v. Phillips, 14-14660 (11Cir 2016)-A writ of bodily attachment for unpaid child support is a warrant for purposes of the Fourth Amendment. Police can arrest on a civil warrant and can conduct a search incident to arrest.