United States v. Highbull, No. 17-2728 (8th Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
The Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court's denial of defendant's motion to suppress evidence recovered from a cell phone after he pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a child. The court held that defendant's girlfriend was acting as a private citizen, rather than a government agent, when she retrieved the phone from his vehicle. Therefore, the Fourth Amendment was not applicable in this case, because the retrieval of the phone amounted to private conduct rather than government action. The court reasoned that the girlfriend did not search the vehicle at the officer's request and there was insufficient evidence to show that she was motivated solely or even primarily by the intent to aid the officers.