7 Jan 2021 and beyond - the aftermath of the storming of the Capitol

Those who record their crimes should expect that a court just might want to see it.

And that resolution was the result of the GOP voting down the bipartisan version that catered to every whim of their assigned negotiator.

I am no fan of these guys, but this seems uncomfortably close to Fifth Amendment self-incrimination. The judge ruled otherwise, treating it as an action under a standard search warrant, but it still makes my skin prickle a bit.

Me too. I hate to think the prosecution could make me open my safe or unlock my phone. Get a warrant and do what you can, but I don’t have to help (*would be my position, I understand the courts disagree)

Reading the CNN article, there was a warrant, but it may have been expired. Certainly if there was a judge involved, a new warrant could easily be issued.

This doesn’t make sense to me. Assuming they had a valid warrant, would you refuse to unlock your house or car for the police or force them to break in? How is your phone or computer or safe any different? (Again, assuming they have a valid search warrant for those things).

Sounds like potential grounds for an appeal, which if so is a damn shame.

Yes, they would have to break in. And if they wanted to see what’s in my safe (or what have you) they’d have to break in to that, too. I’m dummying up at that point, and not opening anything for them.

I don’t think so. I seem to recall that this is permissible under the law. I just did a quick search and found this:

But without further guidance from the Supreme Court, it’s largely been left up to interpretation by lower courts, with state courts considering their state constitution’s provisions as well as the federal. The result, Crocker says, is “a total patchwork of [decisions from] state Supreme Courts and federal courts.”

For example, in 2019, Massachusetts’s highest court forced a defendant to reveal his phone’s passcode while Pennsylvania’s highest court ruled that a defendant could not be compelled to unlock his computer. Indiana’s and New Jersey’s highest courts are both considering compelled passcode disclosure cases. On the federal side, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a defendant could be compelled to unlock multiple password-protected devices, even though the defendant claimed he couldn’t remember his passwords. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, on the other hand, ruled the other way in a different case.

“It’s very much in flux,” Crocker said. “Eventually, the US Supreme Court could get involved and resolve this.”

So, Unless there have been more recent cases, I guess it might be an open question and could be grounds for appeal, but I wouldn’t bet on the defendant.

The phone/computer thing I can kind of see, in that “breaking” into it would presumably not damage it and why make their jobs easier. But forcing them to break down your front door? What’s the point? You’re just going to have to spend a few hundred bucks to fix it and it won’t stop them for a minute. Seems like cutting off your nose to spite your face, to me.

The fifth means that you can’t be compelled manufacture new evidence against yourself.

If you have already made a statement, in your diary, or made a recording, then the evidence already exists. You can be ordered to hand it over, and it can be used as evidence.

Here’s a simplified explanation of how it works, in a comic strip, written and drawn by a lawyer.

That’s what I was thinking. The choice is not “do I wish to incriminate myself?”, it’s “do I want to have a safe I can use again, or one with holes drilled in it?”

I ended up reading thru about 40 pages of that webcomic; it is excellent. Thanks for the introduction, Peter!

“Precedent” is what you make of it. The House makes general committee assignments via a resolution at the start of each Congress, adopted by a majority vote. According to this WaPo article, Republicans are contemplating, “how Democrats might pay a price with their own committee assignments when Republicans regain the majority.”

The “QAnon shaman” may be mentally ill, you say? Golly: https://www.usnews.com/news/top-news/articles/2021-07-23/exclusive-qanon-shaman-in-plea-negotiations-after-mental-health-diagnosis-lawyer

“What we’ve done is we’ve taken a guy who is unarmed, harmless, peaceful … with a pre-existing mental vulnerability of significance, and we’ve rendered him a chocolate soup mess,” Watkins said.

He had a spear in his hands; that’s not “unarmed, harmless, peaceful”.

And many people who are mentally ill don’t travel to overthrow the government. That takes a bit of mental stability to plan and carry through on. If he is mentally ill he should be institutionalized as he is a clear danger to himself and more so to society. He followed and led a mob to the Capitol and successfully got in. Should we let someone who wants to overthrow the government like Stalin walk?


And another felony assault against police charge. Where’s Ron “they wouldn’t break any laws” Johnson when they need a defense?

Yes. But this pisses me off: