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Please begin with an informative title:

A routine request in Florida for public records regarding the use of a surveillance tool known as stingray took an extraordinary turn recently when federal authorities seized the documents before police could release them.

The surprise move by the U.S. Marshals Service stunned the American Civil Liberties Union, which earlier this year filed the public records request with the Sarasota, Florida, police department for information detailing its use of the controversial surveillance tool.

The ACLU had an appointment last Tuesday to review documents pertaining to a case investigated by a Sarasota police detective. But marshals swooped in at the last minute to grab the records, claiming they belong to the U.S. Marshals Service and barring the police from releasing them.

Link

This was Diaried at least once this morning, but...

Since this IS Florida, you just know it's gotta get a bit weirder...

Intro

You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

The records sought by the ACLU are important because the organization has learned that a Florida police detective obtained permission to use a stingray simply by filing an application with the court under Florida’s “trap and trace” statute instead of obtaining a probable-cause warrant. Trap and trace orders generally are used to collect information from phone companies about telephone numbers received and called by a specific account. A stingray, however, can track the location of cell phones, including inside private spaces.
A pretty weak argument by the gubmint there, but at least it's an argument...
Recently, the Tallahassee police department revealed it had used stingrays at least 200 times since 2010 without telling any judge because the device’s manufacturer made the police department sign a non-disclosure agreement that police claim prevented them from disclosing use of the device to the courts.
Well, of course an agreement with a company trumps the Constitution, everybody knows THAT.

We need another Snowden to let us know exactly what this thing does (like, can it be used to capture content? Can it capture ALL cells connecting to it at any given time?) and how it's actually being used.

Or maybe John Oliver can just pitch a fit...

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to The Baculum King on Wed Jun 04, 2014 at 03:05 PM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Florida.

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