If you finda police bug can you remove/destroy it?

Basically just as the title says. If police get a warrant and everything to bug your car (for instance) and you find it can you legally remove/destroy it? Also, if you found a bug could you then ask the police why they are following you and demand an answer?

You can ask whatever you want. They have no compulsion (or, probably, desire) to tell you. Also, a “bug” could come from any of many law enforcement agencies and most don’t know what the other is doing.

In the example of vehicles, I’ve worked with a lot of cases in which tracking devices were planted - usually when parked in plain view, for safety’s sake.

If you’re at the point where the police are using this tech, you’re not a victim - you’re a perp, and there is plenty of other incriminating data already in place.

You mean legally legally, or legally in the sense can they charge you with anything? I would guess you can treat it like any trash someone has left on your property… tho the funnier option is planting it on someone else.

Asked and discussed about 6 weeks ago: Legality of destroying bugs (the recording devices) - Factual Questions - Straight Dope Message Board

How would you know it was a police bug, rather than one from a competitor of yours?

I doubt they are actually marked “Property of xyz Police Department”.

Yes, because in the US, you are guilty if the police think you’ve committed a crime. :rolleyes:

And, yes, you can remove the device.

Interesting question. Wouldn’t removing it and placing it on another car be “obstructing police investigations”? But being compelled not to remove it once you were aware of it, wouldn’t that fall under the umbrella of “self-incrimination”?

If I found a device on my property which I did not place, I would destroy it. If questioned by LEO, I would state that I never assumed it to be placed legitimately.

Then again, I’ve inadvertently received email carrying this disclaimer:

and I’ve gone ahead and disseminated, distributed and copied it. Life in the fast lane!:stuck_out_tongue:

I toyed with using “CMPDViceUnit12-CovertMonitoring” as my SSID when I first set up my WiFi.

I decided it would simply make it more attractive to potential crackers.

Then why bother with more “incriminating data”. If I’m a “perp”, arrest me and prove it in court.

I have a harder & harder time respecting cops. I know it’s easy to get jaded in that job, but that’s a job where being jaded is a huge negative.

I would leave it in place and fuck with them. If I was actually a “perp”, I’d be throwing them off the track, trying to point them at someone else. If I was innocent, I’d just be giving them acid trips without the acid.

Admittedly, I tend to side with the authorities in questions of evidence collection, just based on past experience. I guess what I was referring to was that by the time a warrant is issued for electronic surveillance (at least in the Federal system), an affidavit has been prepared by a LEO and presented under oath to the US Attorney, and AUSA under oath. It must be further presented to a Federal District Court or court of appeals judge accompanied by a memo of authorization from the Justice Department.

IMHO/IME, with all of those parties agreeing that there is plenty of evidence in place, you’ve probably done something you shouldn’t have. I can think of only one case on which I’d worked in a support capacity in which a Title III warrant didn’t result in conviction, and in that case the judge told the investigators (privately) to start a new case and nail the son of a bitch, as the jury was clearly not impartial (demographically homogenous, the defendant was a local Robin Hood type funded by drug dealing, etc).

There’s a reason for the expression, “let’s not make a Federal case out of this.” By the time a Federal case is brought, there is generally a tremendous preponderance of evidence.

Two big reasons for more incriminating data:

  1. To make sure the case is air tight; a slam-dunk case means that you won’t done all that investigation, dangerous UC work, etc. and let the target walk when his attorney starts trying to contradict other evidence.
  2. Sometimes, the additional homework prevents further crimes. In a drug case I assisted on, a wiretap was in place and uncovered a plot to kidnap, rob, and murder the dealers’ suppliers. Annoyingly, that was just hours after the wire went up and the whole thing had to be rolled up that night in order prevent a bloodbath.

[quote=“Yookeroo, post:10, topic:550718”]

Exactly. I would do my best to portray myself as an innocent dupe, or at least, try to drop some crumbs to point them in another direction.

Not that I have anything to feel guilty about, dontcha know.