Muni-Mail – Report: Car Searches Plummet Following Pena-Flores Decision

[5/24/10 1:18 am] The Supreme Court Special Committee on Telephonic and Electronic Search Warrants (The Pena-Flores Committee) has released its report to the New Jersey Supreme Court. This committee was formed to study the numerous administrative and practical issues in implementing the speedy availability of judges to law enforcement for the purposes of considering telephonic search warrant applications following the Supreme Court’s holding in State v. Pena-Flores, 198 NJ 6 (2009). Among the findings of the committee were that an estimated 92,272 automobile searches occurred on an annual basis prior to the holding in Pena-Flores. Following the case, this number has decreased to a projected 47,045 searches on an annualized basis.

Among the many recommendations by the committee were that, initially, Superior Court Judges continue to consider all telephonic search warrant applications, that a police officer’s telephonic search warrant application be considered with 30 to 45 minutes and that if the recommended system does not work based upon the volume of law enforcement applications, a new system, possibility utilizing municipal court judges be immediately considered.

The Supreme Court invites signed comments on the report from the public. Comments may be sent by June 18th to:

Pena-Flores Committee Report c/o
Glenn A. Grant, J.A.D. Acting Administrative Director of the Courts Attention: Comments on Reports
Hughes Justice Complex; P.O. Box 037 Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0037

Comments on the Committee’s report and recommendations also may be submitted by Internet e-mail to the following address: Comments.Mailbox@judiciary. state.nj.us .

Download a copy of the Committee Report.

Category: Muni-Mail Archive