State appeals court allows cops to search cell phone

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A state appeals court Friday ruled that police could search the cell phone of a man arrested on drug charges — but it also called on the Florida Supreme Court to take up the issue.

The 5th District Court of Appeal overturned a Brevard County circuit judge’s ruling that tossed out evidence found in text messages on the phone. Police did not obtain a search warrant before searching the phone of Ricardo Glasco, who was arrested for possession of cocaine with intent to sell or deliver, possession of cannabis and use or possession of drug paraphernalia, according to the ruling.

Police officers searched the cell phone while Glasco was being processed into jail. “Text messages retrieved from the cell phone revealed that Glasco had cocaine he intended to sell,” the ruling said. The three-judge panel relied heavily on similar rulings in the 1st District Court of Appeal that said evidence obtained in cell phones should not be suppressed.

Material from the News Service of Florida was used in this report.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.