Category: Fifth Amendment

January 17, 2017

Alexa: Play Confession

It sits in your house, passively recording everything you say.  It knows what you like.  It knows what you listen to.  It knows what you buy.  It knows who’s in the room with you.  And now, it might tell the police all about it. “It” is the Amazon Echo, a revolution in the “internet of… Read More

July 8, 2014

The Right to Remain Silent Does Not Extend to Computer/Phone Passwords

Recently the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that under certain circumstances, a court may compel a criminal defendant to provide the password to encrypted digital evidence without violating the defendant’s constitutional rights. This is an increasingly prevalent issue that has divided courts across the country and may be presented to the United States Supreme Court… Read More

March 18, 2011

‘Taking the Fifth’ Before Congress: A New Ethics Twist

It’s unethical for a prosecutor to put a witness on the stand in a criminal trial when he or she knows in advance that the witness is going to take the Fifth Amendment and refuse to testify at all. Legal ethics authorities reason that the only effect of that kind of testimony is not to… Read More