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July 30, 2020

Fourth Amendment

Biology and the Fourth Amendment

When is biology private? In the wake of the Supreme Court's recent DNA ruling, this session explored how the Court has ruled on Fourth Amendment issues related to the body--everything from fingerprinting to strip searches.

Search Me

The lesson begins with students lined up in the front of the room. They are presented with a series of searches/seizures. If they believe the search/seizure was lawful, they step forward; if they believe it to be unlawful, they step backward. Next, students break into four groups. Each group is responsible for focusing on searches/seizures in a specific setting: at school, at home, in cars, or in public. The groups reconvene and present their ideas and findings to the rest of the class. The lesson ends with a discussion of the Fact Patterns handout. The instructor might also use this as an assessment. 

Technology and the Fourth Amendment

Wire-tapping, infrared sensors, pagerse, GPS, oh my! In the past century, the U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly addressed questions surrounding the use of new technologies to conduct searches and their relationship to the Fourth Amendment. Students will explore historic and current cases raising technological challenges to the Fourth Amendment.