Information may only be obtained pursuant to a warrant supported by probable cause
Should you be suspected of a crime, the state Court of Appeals – in an opinion released Tuesday – ruled law enforcement can discover where you are through your mobile phone location without needing to obtain a search warrant.
Indeed, according to the court, obtaining such information isn’t construed as a search.
A Raleigh police detective submitted a request to AT&T in December 2012 for information relating to the phone of a cooperating suspect in order to gather evidence on a perceived heroin trafficker who was heading from Charlotte to Raleigh.
According to the opinion, “On (Dec. 11), 2012, at approximately 4 p.m., Detective (M.K.) Mitchell received a record of a ‘hit’ from one of AT&T’s cell towers, which placed the phone within a few meters of the Red Roof Inn, located on South Saunders Street, near Interstate 40 in Raleigh. Detective Mitchell and other law enforcement officers from the Criminal Drug Enterprise Unit of the Raleigh Police Department began conducting surveillance from unmarked vehicles stationed around the Red Roof Inn.