Another Win For The 4th Amendment

A judge in Fairfax County ruled against local police taking and storing photos of random license plates that are not part of any investigation.

From WaPo

“A Fairfax County judge on Monday ordered the Fairfax police to stop maintaining a database of photos of vehicle license plates, with the time and location where they were snapped, ruling that “passive use” of data from automated license plate readers on the back of patrol cars violates Virginia privacy law. The ruling followed a related finding by the Virginia Supreme Court last year, meaning the case could affect how long — if at all — Virginia police can keep license plate data.”

This ruling is from a case brought to the court by the ACLU. It only applies to Fairfax County Police.

In 2013, as Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli wrote an opinion consistent with this new ruling that applied to Virginia State Police.

State Senator Chap Petersen, who supports the ruling, told WaPo, “I hope that Fairfax County appeals it to the Supreme Court so it can become a statewide ruling.”

Too many things have become too partisan. We don’t see a lot policies supported by the ACLU, conservative Ken Cuccinelli, and Democrat Chap Petersen. It is nice to see that this case as such broad support. While the 4th Amendment was not cited as reason supporting this ruling, this is still a win for privacy rights and protection against an overactive police state.

Hopefully the Virginia State Supreme Court will offer the same opinion.