Government & Politics
Fri April 4, 2014
New Law puts Limits on Police Phone Tracking
Conservative Delegate Bob Marshall and the Virginia ACLU are on the same side of a new law that limits how far police can go when tracking people. Thursday, Governor McAuliffe signed the cell phone-tracking bill, which was sponsored by Marshall, to protect Fourth Amendment rights.
A smart phone is often one's link to business and social life. It’s a remote-control, mobile gaming device, and a GPS when lost. The latter is also how law enforcement can know a person’s every move. Prior to this law, without someone’s knowledge and without a warrant, police could hone in on his location. Marshall says it’s alarming that many people who don’t think they’re doing anything wrong are either oblivious or just don't care that law enforcement has that capability and has been using it.
The state ACLU applauds the new law, but says more needs to be done. Law enforcement can still see where people were in the past, including political rallies, doctor's offices, or anywhere someone wants to remain private. The ACLU is urging both the governor and lawmakers to protect historic location information next.