In another shocking display of jurist malfeasance, Virginia Circuit Judge Stephen Fucci has ruled that police can pry open your hands and force you to unlock your cell phone that has a fingerprint security feature.
Not only is Fucci’s ruling an affront to both the 4th and 5th Amendments but is also shockingly ignorant.
According to Judge Steven C. Fucci: while a criminal defendant can’t be compelled to hand over a passcode to police officers for the purpose of unlocking a cellular device, law enforcement officials can compel a defendant to give up a fingerprint.
Here’s the rub though, with the advancement of technology, more and more things are going the way of biometric scans. The logical conclusion to Fucci’s ruling is that any biometric lock, be it fingerprint swipe or iris scan can be searched without a warrant or permission or consent from the owner.
This extends beyond a simple cell phone as cars, houses, safe boxes more and more are gravitating to the biometric defenses. Judge Fucci has effectively ruled that while such locks may be a deterrent to criminals, it is actually a highway to infringement town when it comes to the police who no longer would need a warrant to search anything.
Think of the following scenario where a car is locked solely by a biometric fingerprint scan.
Cop: Please step out of the vehicle.
Innocent Person: (locks car upon exiting)
Cop: Unlock your car so I can search it?
Innocent Person: For what reason?
Cop: Doesn’t matter, I just want to search it…I’m a suspicious person.
Innocent Person: That’s not good enough, I’m not unlocking my car.
The cop calls for back up. It shows up, his cop buddy throws a billy club around our innocent drivers neck starts to choke him out while our first cop pries a finger out of the fist (dislocating it so it couldn’t be balled up again) and then uses it to open the car.