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true where the company has installed a firewall and a whole department of people whose
job it was to monitor their employee's Internet activity.
As we know, the Fourth Amendment protects people, not places. Katz v. United States,
389 U.S. 347, 351, 88 S.Ct. 507, 19 L.Ed.2d 576 (1967). Although it is often true that
"for most people, their computers are their most private spaces," *1143 United States v.
Gourde, 440 F.3d 1065, 1077 (9th Cir.2006) (en banc) (Kleinfeld, J., dissenting), the
validity of that expectation depends entirely on its context. Cf. Ortega, 480 U.S. at 715, 82 107 S.Ct. 1492 ("We have no talisman that determines in all cases those privacy
expectations that society is prepared to accept as reasonable.").
In that vein, a criminal defendant may invoke the protections of the Fourth Amendment
only if he can show that he had a legitimate expectation of privacy in the place searched
or the item seized. Smith v. Maryland, 442 U.S. 735, 740, 99 S.Ct. 2577, 61 L.Ed.2d 220
(1979). This expectation is established where the claimant can show: (1) a subjective
expectation of privacy; and (2) an objectively reasonable expectation of privacy. See id.
(citing Katz, 389 U.S. at 351, 361, 88 S.Ct. 507); United States v. Shryock, 342 F.3d 948,
978 (9th Cir.2003). It is Ziegler's burden to prove both elements. United States v.
Caymen, 404 F.3d 1196, 1199 (9th Cir.2005) (citation omitted).
The threshold question then is whether Ziegler had a legitimate expectation of privacy in
his workplace computer and the files stored therein. [FN9] If he had no such expectation,
we need not consider whether the Frontline employees acted as agents of the government
so as to implicate Fourth Amendment protections.
FN9. Ziegler also urges us to suppress the files found on his computer because it was
located in his private office. Although an employee may have a legitimate expectation of
privacy in his office, here the Frontline employees did not actually search Zie...
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This note was uploaded on 09/30/2012 for the course ENC 102 taught by Professor Deria during the Spring '08 term at FIU.
- Spring '08