U.S. Dist. Ct. invokes 6th Circuit Carpenter decision to defeat a Carpenter claim based on good faith.

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky recently denied a Motion to Suppress of CSLI of the defendant’s phone, using the 6th Circuit Carpenter decision that was subsequently reversed by the U.S. Supreme Court to decide that law enforcement acted in good faith in this case.

Law enforcement connected a cell phone to the Defendant so the DEA applied for a court order under the Stored Communications Act to obtain CSLI for the cell phone. That cell site location information placed the defendant in Kentucky during a time that he was allegedly in the state selling heroin.

In disposing of the Defendant’s Motion to Suppress based on Carpenter, the District Court held that the U.S. Supreme Court Carpenter decision is controlling law as of June 22, 2018, but at the time that the DEA obtained the CSLI on July 24, 2017, the law in the 6th Circuit was the Carpenter opinion that had not yet been reversed.

Citing Davis v. United States and United States v. Leon, the District Court held that the DEA relied in good faith on a court order issued under the Stored Communications Act and the Sixth Circuit’s decision in Carpenter.

The case is United States v. Shaw, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130656 (E.D. Kentucky) (August 3)

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