On the 50th Anniversary of Gideon v. Wainwright

Today marks the 50th Anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Gideon v. Wainwright decision, which held that the Sixth Amendment to the Constitution guarantees to every criminal defendant in a felony trial the right to a lawyer. But is that right really effective today? Two pieces arguing that the answer to that question is “not so much”:

“How Americans Lost the Right to Counsel, 50 Years After ‘Gideon’” by Andrew Cohen writing in The Atlantic.

“Simon Waxman on ‘Chasing Gideon’; Pleading Out: America’s Broken Public Defense System” in the Los Angeles Review of Books.

The Supreme Court Decision in Gideon v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963)

Link Round-Up: U.S. v. Jones (GPS tracking and the Constitution)

The U.S. Supreme Court for the first time pondered the constitutionality of location tracking technology in the case of U.S. v. Jones. The Court decided yesterday that the government’s attachment of a GPS device to a vehicle (followed by the government’s use of that device to monitor the vehicle’s movements on a long term basis) constitute a search under the 4th Amendment. The emphasis in the majority opinion on the physical placing of the monitoring device on the vehicle and the existence of separate concurring opinions raise questions as to how far this decision really extends – important questions given the increasing prevalence of geolocation tracking.

The Supreme Court decision in U.S. v. Jones:

”Supreme Court Holds Warrantless GPS Tracking Unconstitutional” at ArsTechnica’s Law & Disorder

”Fourth Amendment Lives? Supreme Court Says GPS Monitoring Is A Search That May Require Warrant” at TechDirt.com

“Reactions to Jones v. United States: The government fared much better than everyone realizes” by Tom Goldstein at SCOTUSblog.com.

”Why the Jones Supreme Court Ruling on GPS Tracking is Worse than it Sounds” by Rebecca J. Rosen at The Atlantic.

”U.S. Supreme Court Unanimously Rule that GPS Installation and Tracking of a Vehicle Constitutes a Search, But The Justices Disagree on Rationale – Are Lines Being Drawn on Privacy Rights and New Technology?” at Proskauer’s New Media & Technology Law Blog.

A series of posts at The Volokh Conspiracy by law professor, Orin Kerr, an expert on computer crime and related areas:

”The New Doctrine of What is A Fourth Amendment Search”

”What Jones Does Not Hold”

”What’s the Status of the Mosaic Theory After Jones?”

”Three Questions Raised By The Trespass Test in United States v. Jones”

”Why Did Justice Sotomayor Join Scalia’s Majority Opinion in Jones?”