A report from USA Today from 20 January 2015 indicates that at least fifty police agencies are using a new radar device that allows officers to see if people are inside homes and if they are moving around. These agencies are using the devices, shall I say, under the radar.
The officers use the device to violate the right of the people inside to their privacy. Courts have ruled that officers must get a warrant to do such a thing but these officers are not getting those warrants.
Their reports do not mention that they used the device to determine someone was in a structure instead opting to report that an anonymous source reported it or there was reasonable suspicion.
On his radio program last evening Sean Hannity discussed this technology and said he was torn on the issue because officers who are going to a structure that might have dangerous people in it need to know how many and if they are moving around. It is, according to Hannity, all about the safety of those officers. Hannity has been willing to cede some rights in the name of police or some law in the past. He claims to be conservative but has no trouble allowing for a police state in some cases…
There is no doubt that the safety of officers needs to be taken into consideration. I only wish that the safety of the building occupants mattered as much to agencies and people like Hannity. How often are people harmed during a raid (and how often is it the wrong house)?
In any event, there is a simple solution and since Hannity claims to be solutions oriented he should buy into it.
GET A WARRANT.
I was under the impression the police had to stay a certain distance from your property anyway. But even if they are allowed to just trespass and walk up to your house they certainly are not allowed to use devices to search the inside (and that is what this is).
If they have probable cause to be there then getting a warrant should be easy. If they can’t get the warrant it is likely they should not be at the house in the first place. If there is no proof of wrongdoing then being there amounts to a fishing expedition where officers are looking for a reason to be able to enter. If they are there to make an entry then it should be easy to include the radar in the warrant.
I, unlike Hannity, do not want to give up my right to privacy. My home belongs to me and if you want to search it (by entering or with a device) then you need a warrant.
No need to be torn Sean. Tell them that you believe in officer safety BUT they need to get a warrant.
Never surrender, never submit.