Supreme Court Holds That Affixing GPS Tracking Device to a Car Constitutes a Fourth Amendment “Search”

On January 23, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court held (in U.S. v. Jones; decision below) that the government’s “installation of a GPS device on a target’s vehicle, and its use of that device to monitor the vehicle’s movements, constitutes a ‘search'” within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment. Central to the Court’s analysis and conclusion was the physical intrusion into defendant’s car (a Fourth Amendment “effect”).