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Justices Consider No-Warrant Cellphone Searches

Cellphone
Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

The Supreme Court seems wary of allowing police unbridled freedom to search cellphones found on people they arrest.

The court heard arguments in two cases Tuesday involving a drug dealer and a gang member whose convictions turned in part on evidence found on their cellphones.

The justices suggested they might favor limiting warrantless cellphone searches to looking for evidence of the crime on which an arrest is based. Both defendants could lose in such an outcome.

But it would allow the court to avoid subjecting people arrested for minor crimes from having the vast contents of their cellphones open to police inspection.

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