"The Fourth Amendment does not recognize guilt by association," U.S. District Court Judge Richard Sullivan wrote in ruling the New York Police Department illegally arrested a large number of demonstrators during the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York's Madison Square Garden. The ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York held that police lacked probable cause for many of the arrests, because they had no knowledge or reason to believe that the individuals arrested had broken the law.
The U.S. Supreme Court on October 1 rejected the appeal of a Michigan resident who claimed the use of body-imaging scanners and pat-down procedures by Transportation Security Administration agents at airports throughout the country violate airline passengers' privacy rights protected by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. On the first day of its new term, the court refused without comment to consider the appeal of Jonathan Corbett, who publishes a blog called "TSA Out of Our Pants!" Corbett's suit had been dismissed by the U.S. District Court in Southern Florida in a ruling upheld by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, Georgia.
The Supreme Court justices who raised political storms in the last few years with controversial landmark decisions face no shortage of opportunities to do the same in the new term.
Soon Michigan may join the list of other states who have passed legislation checking the president’s power under the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to indefinitely detain American citizens.
An Illinois appeals court has ruled that pharmacists may refuse to dispense the "morning-after pill" after a seven-year-long protracted legal battle involving two Illinois pharmacists who took issue with having to dispense the pills. Luke VanderBleek and Glen Kosirog, long-time Christians, sought a religious exemption from a 2005 executive order that directed all pharmacists to fill prescriptions for the morning after pill. The appeals court ruled in their favor on September 21.