Commonwealth v. Johnson

In Commonwealth v. Johnson, a plurality of justices signed onto an opinion announcing the judgment of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, holding that law enforcement failed to establish probable cause to search the contents of two cell phones. Those phones were recovered from the defendant’s pocket. He was in an apartment where drugs and guns were found, but the affidavit of probable cause did not specify where he was in relation to the contraband or why one would expect particular evidence of nefarious conduct to be found on the phones. The case also noted that, under Article 1, Section 8 of the PA Constitution, the particularity requirement requires greater specificity than its federal counterpart.

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