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Eavesdropping By Cops Does Not Pay Off In Florida Courtrooms

The 4th DCA (District Court of Appeals) recently affirmed a lower court’s evidentiary ruling, which may have far reaching exclusions on statements a defendant makes to third parties, when the statements are overheard by others, including Law Enforcement Officer. See, State v. Topps, at 3730009 WL 4th DCA 2014. The issue on appeal in State v. Topps, was a case of first impression for a Florida court to decide, and the question posed was: “may a law enforcement officer testify about a conversation overheard between an arrestee he is guarding and the psychotherapist treating that person?” The Appellate court found that because the person in custody did not waive the confidentiality of any privilege that the arrestee has with his doctor, and because the arrestee was in custody, and because… […]

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