ANALYZING SEARCH WARRANT 4
Theaffidavit is a seeking the judge to approve a search warrant for Mr.Yup I. Didit premises which is located at 122 SW 7thin Topeka, Kansas, U.S.A. The search warrant wishes to acquire accessto a Dell Precision computer model T3500 which is desktop computerbelieved to be used by the alleged sex offender. In addition, theaffidavit seeks to search Mr. Didit’s electronic media storage suchas hard drive and 4 Memorex compact disks. The affidavit also seekspermission to peruse computer hardware which includes data processingequipment such as central processing unit, peripheral storage devicessuch as external hard drive, diskettes, floppy disks and fixed disks.Other devices such as the mouse, keyboard and cables. The affidavitalso seeks to acquire any other documents or files such as prints,negatives, slides, video tapes, cassettes, compact disks, electronicnotebooks, electronic dialers and personal digital devices that mayhave been used by the alleged offender.
Theaffidavit was excellent because it was first of all very detailed.For instance, the police officer did a good job of including any formof evidence or material that could implicate the alleged offender. Heincludes all the necessary files, documents and devices that couldhave been used and could be useful in generating evidence of anywrong doing or crimes committed by Mr. Didit. In addition, the policeofficer did a great job in highlighting his experience andspecialization in the area of criminal investigations and sex crimes.In my opinion, I fell that the officer did an excellent job and buthe could have probably mentioned the alleged offender’s backgroundor history as far as sex crimes or child pornography is concerned.
IfI was the forensic examiner in the case, I would have the authorityto search for Mr. Didit’s Dell Precision black T3500 desktopcomputer along with some electronic media storage devices such ashard drives and 4 Memorex recordable compact discs. I would also havethe authority to search other files and documents such as prints,files, videotapes, negative, films, cassette recordings, hard disksand other storage devices that could have been used by the allegedoffender. As a forensic examiner, I would be looking for the anymaterial that could be used as evidence of child pornography. Thiscould involve any visual images that could involve minors engaging insexual conduct. Such as any pictures of images depicting sexualintercourse, masturbation, bestiality, display of genitals in publicand sadistic or masochistic abuse.
Inmy opinion, questions 1 and 3 are totally different. This is becausequestion 1 is an affidavit seeking the judge approval to issue asearch warrant that can be used to search the alleged offender’spremises. Question 3 on the other hand is asking about a searchwarrant issued by the judge, authorizing the relevant authorities toconduct a search for specific items identified by the judge. In otherwords, the affidavit and the search warrant issued by the judgecannot be the same and there might be some differences between thetwo. The judge has the discretion to include or disapprove any itemswhich may be deemed necessary or unnecessary in given case.
Theinvestigator may perform some actions that are outside the scope ofthe authorized search warrant. For instance, the investigator maydecide to embark on the offender’s past record or background andmake a case out of it. For instance, the investigator may decide touse the victims of the offender from previous cases and use them asevidence against the alleged offender. In addition, he may decide touse individuals who participated in chat with the alleged offender onSeptember 30 and October 2 dates.
Ifan investigator would go beyond the scope of the warrant and managesto get some more evidence, the evidence collected as a result cannotbe used against the alleged offender. This is what is usuallyreferred to as the fruit of the poisonous tree, which is a legalmetaphor used when evidence is acquired from either an illegal searchor the investigator goes beyond the scope described by the searchwarrant. In such a scenario, the new evidence collected cannot beused against Mr. Didit in a court of law as the evidence collectedcannot be used in a criminal trial.
Theofficer return is supposed to comply with the instructions stipulatedby the search warrant that a judge or a magistrate hands out.According to the search warrant, the officer return is supposed toconduct a search on Mr.Didit’s premises and also bring turn him tothe authorities within ninety six hours from October 4, 2010 at 12p.m. The search warrant authorizes the officer return to eitherconduct the search during the day or night. In addition, the searchwarrant should be presented to the alleged offender or the person incharge of the premises. A copy of the warrant should be returned tothe judge after the lapse of the ninety six hours.