On May 2, 2013, Sheik Naieem Trice was indicted for possession after he was found guilty by a grand jury. Police officers had suspected his drug involvement and followed him around the blocks. The drug buy-ins ascertained Trice’s involvement, as well as the camera mounted on his apartment’s walkway, which led to his arrest. Trice filed for suppression of evidence for violating his Fourth Amendment rights, following the obtaining of evidence using a warrantless investigation approach. Despite his efforts to file the affidavit, the District Court dismissed his submissions, citing his inability to establish a connection between his apartment and alleged crime involvement.
A Summary of the Procedural History of the Case
Even though the District Court dismissed Trice’s submission and maintained his guilt status, the Sixth Circuit evaluated the reasoning adopted by the lower court to sentence Trice. In this regard, the placement of the camera by the investigative team was further questioned because of the probable invasion of privacy, which the Fourth Amendment protects. However, the court established that Trice lacked the subjective expectation, an outcome that validated the use of the camera in the investigation.
Sheik Naieem Trice was found guilty of drug possession and distributing over 100 grams of heroin. Trice was sentenced to serve 151 months on the three counts of crime, which compelled him to appeal the ruling in the Appellate Court, the Fourth Circuit. Trice raised three issues in his appeal, which compelled the Fourth Circuit to review the outcome and affirm the position adopted by the District Court.
Appellate Court Decision and Ruling
The Fourth Circuit upheld the ruling adopted by the District Court because of the probable cause, which supports the investigative approaches embraced to nail Trice, a heroin dealer. The court of appeal ruled out Trice’s affidavit because of its inability to
Key Legal Questions
Supreme Court Writing
Judge Bush explored Trice’s submissions by reviewing the details of Katz v. the United States, indicating that individuals must demonstrate subjective explanations, which are perceived by the society to be reasonable.
I agree with the Supreme Court’s ruling, which affirmed the decision of the District Court on the case. The camera and the organized drug buys did not violate Trice’s Fourth Amendment rights.
The United States v. Jones
Following the suspicion of his criminal involvement, the Metropolitan Police Department, in a joint operation with the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), arrested Antoine Jones in 2005. The joint task force had installed a GPS tracker on a vehicle owned by Jones’ wife, which enabled them to monitor his movements. During the first trial in 2006, Jones was acquitted of multiple criminal counts before being retired in 2007, where he was found guilty of the intention to distribute over 5kgs of cocaine. The court sentenced Jones to life imprisonment.
Summary of the Case
In 2010, the Court of Appeal overturned the ruling adopted by the lower court, citing a possible invasion of privacy, which violated Jones’ Fourth Amendment rights. In 2011, the Supreme Court evaluated the decision made by the court of appeal and introduced two vital questions, which changed the legal context of the entire trial process.
Facts of the Case
Antoine Jones was arrested by the police in 2005, following an intense investigation over his drug involvement and other criminal activities. To monitor his movements, the police installed a GPS tracker on his vehicle without a valid warrant. The efforts of the junior court were invalidated because of their inability to obtain a valid warrant, authorizing them to investigate Jones and other people in his surroundings.
Appellate Court Decision and Reasoning
The Appellate Court embraced Jones’ reasoning and maintained that the search conducted by the police violated his Fourth Amendment rights. Given that Jones expected to be accorded privacy, the police failed to acknowledge his rights and violated them by installing the intrusive gadget.
Supreme Court Ruling
In 2012, the Supreme Court upheld the decision adopted by the lower court that installing a GPS tracker on a suspect’s vehicle warrants the search because of the existence of probable cause. However, on 19th June 2020, the Supreme Court reversed its ruling and ordered a resentencing after vacating the ruling made by the district court.
I believe the recent reversal made by the Supreme Court is justified because of its ability to set a legal precedence that can be used to solve legal complexities when making judgments. While resentencing might not reward Jones’ efforts, the move will create an important talking point that highlights the approaches that should be used to address emerging legal issues.