The Supreme Cout dealt a major blow to the Fourth Amendment today that is being overshadowed in the media by the other opinion it released regarding affirmative action. Having been both a prosecutor and a defense attorney, I have encountered the issue of anonymous cell phone tips as a basis for a seizure on numerous occasions.

The law prior to today was that the tip has to be sufficiently reliable or the police had to observe some corroborating evidence supporting the callers claim before engaging in the seizure. After today, a random call (perhaps from your sworn enemy at the local chess club, or the neighbor who dislikes the way you cut your grass, or maybe from the former spouse with whom you are engaged in a custody battle) is sufficient to give police the “right” to violate your fourth amendment right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures.

As we have been warned by many great minds, the greatest dangers to liberty is when it is chipped away at the edges. Today’s opinion chipped away from the edge of the rights guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment. Another hole in the swiss cheese that is now your Fourth Amendment Rights.

http://www.cato.org/blog/justice-scalia-anonymous-911-tipsters