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Stingray case: Debating cellphone surveillance boundaries for Calif. police




A line of police officers guard the Anaheim Police Department before a protest to show outrage for the several recent officer-involved shootings on July 29, 2012 in Anaheim, California.
A line of police officers guard the Anaheim Police Department before a protest to show outrage for the several recent officer-involved shootings on July 29, 2012 in Anaheim, California.
Jonathan Gibby/Getty Images

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Civil liberties attorneys are suing two California law enforcement agencies for failing to disclose how they use Stingrays - suitcase-size devices that trick cellphones in any given region into transmitting phone data to police instead of phone service providers.

The American Civil Liberties Union of California claims the Anaheim Police Department and Sacramento Co. Sheriff's Department are using Stingrays (also known as IMSI catchers) to track private information of bystanders and suspects "with little or no oversight by the public, legislative agencies, or courts...." Joseph Cassilly, past president of the National District Attorney's Association, defends the use of Stingrays by police empowered with arrest warrants to hunt fugitives. As current State's Attorney for Harford Co., Maryland, Cassilly says his office has no use for the private information of bystanders ensnared by Stingrays.

How are judges dealing with criminal charges linked to Stingray data? Would judges grant warrants for Stingrays if police sought warrants? How much does the public deserve to know about police use of Stingrays?

Guests:

Jessica Price, Staff Attorney, American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California

Joseph Cassily, past President of the National District Attorneys Association (NDAA); current State's Attorney for Harford County, Maryland