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Seventh Circuit rejects challenge to Act 79 search of person on ES

United States v. Dustin Caya, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 19-2469, 4/16/20

Caya was on extended supervision. Police developed reasonable suspicion to search his home, and duly did so under § 302.113(7r), which was created by 2013 Wisconsin Act 79. Caya argues that statute violates the Fourth Amendment. The Seventh Circuit rejects the claim.

Act 79 was enacted in the wake of Supreme Court cases holding that a state may, without violating the Fourth Amendment, authorize searches of parolees or probationers based on mere reasonable suspicion (or even no suspicion) because persons on supervision have a diminished expectation of privacy. United States v. Knights, 534 U.S. 112 (2001); California v. Samson, 547 U.S. 843 (2006). Caya argues that case law doesn’t apply to people on ES because ES is different. (Slip op. at 4-5, 9-10).

After discussing what ES is (slip op. at 5) and reviewing KnightsSamson, and Griffin v. Wisconsin, 483 U.S. 868 (1987) (upholding warrantless search of a probationer’s home based on reasonable suspicion) (slip op. at 6-8), the court rejects Caya’s claim:

Samson controls this case. Formally and practically, Wisconsin’s extended-supervision system is parole by another name. Extended supervision is judicially imposed parole supervision—the second part of the bifurcated sentence imposed by the court. § 973.01(2). Just as parole is ultimately limited by the length of the prison term imposed by the court, the length of extended supervision is limited by the total length of the bifurcated sentence imposed by the judge. § 973.01(2)(a).

Because extended supervision in Wisconsin is judicially imposed parole, an offender on extended supervision has no greater expectation of privacy than a parolee. And Wisconsin’s interest in rigorously monitoring offenders on extended supervision is just as compelling as the government’s parole-supervision interests in Samson. If, as Samson holds, a no-suspicion search of a parolee is constitutionally permissible, so too an Act 79 search—predicated on reasonable suspicion—is constitutionally permissible. (Slip op. at 9).

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