Modern technological advances have greatly changed the method of communication throughout the world. Michigan residents might be among others who have found themselves facing rather complicated situations regarding criminal defense and their iPhones. Apparently, questions have recently been raised as to whether a person's constitutional rights are being violated if a court orders that person to unlock his or her phone through finger-touch identification.
The FBI reportedly requested a search warrant in a recent case in which a woman had entered a no-contest plea to identity theft that apparently had taken place that very day. Authorities wanted the woman to press her finger on an iPhone they believed belonged to her. They had seized the device from the house of the woman's boyfriend, who they suspected was involved in an Armenian gang.
A contentious debate immediately arose as to whether ordering someone to unlock an iPhone violates that person's Fifth Amendment rights. Some say that because it does not involve speech, as would be the case if the person was requested to verbally supply a password to access the contents of the device, it is legally acceptable. Others say the act of unlocking one's phone may be self-incriminating should authorities then use the contents of the device against the person in court.
These types of criminal defense issues are often best addressed by an experienced attorney, who can carefully review a situation and clarify all pertinent laws in the matter. It seems that many legal challenges related to iPhone issues have recently been getting a lot of media attention. Anyone in Michigan facing a similar issue may request a consultation with an attorney before saying or doing anything that may potentially be self-incriminating.
Source: pcmag.com, "Federal Judge Orders Woman to Unlock iPhone with Finger", David Murphy, May 1, 2016