Armey's letter

In Armey's letter to Ashcroft, the Congressional leader cited Monday's Supreme Court's ruling that thermal-imaging devices used by police officers without a search warrant would compromise privacy. Using Carnivore to monitor correspondence could also be categorized as a search and require a warrant, Armey said. "It is reasonable, then, to ask whether the Internet surveillance system...similarly undermines the minimum expectation that individuals have that their personal electronic communications will not be examined by law enforcement devices unless a specific court warrant has been issued," Armey wrote.

Decision of the majority opinion

Where, as here, the Government uses a device that is not in general public use, to explore details of the home that would previously have been unknowable without physical intrusion, the surveillance is a search and is presumptively unreasonable without a warrant.

Since we hold the Thermovision imaging to have been an unlawful search, it will remain for the District Court to determine whether, without the evidence it provided, the search warrant issued in this case was supported by probable cause and if not, whether there is any other basis for supporting admission of the evidence that the search pursuant to the warrant produced.

Clean Record

After I won in the United States Supreme Court my case was reprimanded back to the Federal District Court in Portland, Oregon where my case was first heard. They now had to look to see if they had enough probable cause to go on without the use of the thermal imaging aspect because that was done without a warrant. I didn't have to appear in court again and received a letter in the mail 3 month after I won in the Supreme Court that the District Court in Portland, Oregon has dismissed my case based on not enough probable cause to go. I now have a clean record with no felony on it. The 10 year fight was all worth it and I turned a negative into a positive.