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Supreme Court to hear case on detention incident to search warrant

The US Supreme Court [official website] granted certiorari [order list, PDF] Monday in Bailey v. United States [docket; cert. petition, PDF] to determine whether police officers may lawfully detain individuals incident to a search warrant when those individuals have left the premises before the search warrant could be executed. The defendant has argued that the detention, which occurred after he drove one mile away from his home, was a violation of his Fourth Amendment [text] rights. The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled against the defendant [opinion], holding that police are permitted "to detain the occupant of premises subject to a valid search warrant when that person is seen leaving those premises and the detention is effected as soon as reasonably practicable."

Also on Monday, the court declined to hear two related cases, Scrushy v. United States [docket; cert. petition, PDF] and Siegelman v. United States [docket; cert. petition, PDF], involving allegations of bribery against former Alabama governor Don Siegelman [personal profile; JURIST news archive] and former HealthSouth [corporate website] CEO Richard Scrushy [JURIST news archive]. Scrushy and Siegelman were originally convicted [JURIST report] in 2006 on multiple counts of misconduct and bribery in connection with a $500,000 payment from Scrushy for Siegelman's 1999 campaign debts in exchange for a seat on a state-operated review board that regulates hospitals. The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed two of the convictions [JURIST report] in May of last year, while upholding the other convictions.

The court also declined to hear the case of four former employees of Blackwater [JURIST news archive], now known as Academi, challenging the reinstatement of manslaughter charges against them. Slough v. United States [docket; cert. petition, PDF] revolves around a 2007 shooting incident [JURIST report] in the Nisour Square area of Baghdad that left 17 Iraqi civilians dead. A subsequent FBI [official website] investigation revealed that 14 of the deaths were unjustified acts of excessive force [NYT report]. The US District Court for the District of Columbia initially dismissed the charges [JURIST report] because it found the decision to prosecute the men was "tainted" by the use of immunized statements. The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reinstated the case [JURIST report] in April 2011.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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