E.D. Penn. District Court invokes pre-existing Third Circuit precedent to invoke good faith exception.

This prosecution is based on a series of bank robberies. The Government used the Stored Communications Act to obtain cell site location information for the defendant’s cell phone. The Court, in a brief order, invoked the good faith exception, stating that there was binding Third Circuit precedent permitting these actions. That case is :In re Application of U.S. for an Order Directing a Provider of Elec. Commc’n Service to Disclose Records to Government, 620 F.3d 304, 313 (3d Cir. 2010). Interestingly, this case is not mentioned in the Carpenter case among the other Circuit Court rulings that Carpenter was overruling. This holding was apparently reaffirmed in United States v. Stimler, 864 F.3d 253 (3d Cir. 2017) (“However, Riley focused primarily on protecting the contents of cell phones, not metadata generated from cell phone usage. This distinction is far from trivial . . . .”).

Here is a quote which is worth repeating: “This Court is mindful of the risk of allowing the good faith exception to swallow up the exclusionary rule.” However, the Court found that the Government agents in this case were objectively reasonable to rely on then binding case law from the Third Circuit Court of Appeals (which is the standard from binding good faith precedent). 

The case is United States v. Boyle, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 166096, 2018 WL 4635783 (E.D. Penn.) (September 27)

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