UNITED STATES OF AMERICA v. DEREK MICHAEL TAGG - Articles

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Posted by: Landry Butler on Mar 29, 2018

Court: 6th Circuit Court (Published Opinions)

Attorneys 1:

ARGUED: Mark J. Chasteen, UNITED STATES ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, Detroit, Michigan, for Appellant. Benton C. Martin, FEDERAL DEFENDER OFFICE, Detroit, Michigan, for Appellee.

Attorneys 2:

ON BRIEF: Mark J. Chasteen, UNITED STATES ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, Detroit, Michigan, for Appellant. Benton C. Martin, FEDERAL DEFENDER OFFICE, Detroit, Michigan, for Appellee.

Judge(s): COOK, McKEAGUE, and STRANCH, Circuit Judges.

Court Appealed: Appeal from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan at Detroit.

McKEAGUE, Circuit Judge. In September 2015, police executed a warrant at Derek Tagg’s residence, searching for child pornography. They found plenty of it—over 20,000 files, all stored on Tagg’s computer. The search warrant was based primarily on digital evidence from an FBI operation showing that Tagg had spent over five hours browsing a website (“Playpen”) that obviously contained child pornography. The district court found that the police lacked probable cause to search Tagg’s house because the search warrant did not state that Tagg actually viewed any illegal images while on the site. Further, the court held that no reasonable officer would have relied on the warrant, and therefore suppressed all the evidence seized from Tagg’s home. Because the warrant was supported by probable cause, we REVERSE the order granting the motion to suppress and REMAND the case for proceedings not inconsistent with this opinion.