News Release

Entrusting the Fourth Amendment to the Dogs: Canine Evidence and the Constitution

October 23 Event at the National Press Club 

Please join the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) and a panel of privacy and Fourth Amendment experts as we discuss the implications of two cases to be argued before the Supreme Court on October 31, 2012, challenging law enforcement use of drug detection dogs. The discussion will be followed by a live demonstration with a handler and a trained drug sniffing dog. Florida v. Jardines and Florida v. Harris raise fundamental privacy questions about the true sanctity of one’s home and law enforcement’s use of enhanced searching technologies. Whether travelling through public airports, Amtrak train stations, subway stations, or simply walking down the street, each of us is subject to law enforcement using a dog to sniff our person and our belongings. These cases will have a substantial effect on the way law enforcement can use dogs and other technologies to conduct searches in the future. This event will be live broadcast on C-SPAN 3.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. 


The National Press Club 
529 14th St., NW
13th Floor
Washington, DC  20045


Introductory Remarks, NACDL President Steven D. Benjamin.

Ilya Shapiro, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute. 

Marc Rotenberg, Executive Director, Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC); Professor of Information Privacy Law, Georgetown University Law Center.

Danielle Spinelli, Partner and Supreme Court Litigator, WilmerHale; former clerk to The Hon. Stephen Breyer, U.S. Supreme Court, 2000-01. 

Jeffrey S. Weiner, Criminal Defense Lawyer and Dog Sniff Expert, Miami, Florida; Past President of NACDL (1991-92).

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David G. Savage (moderator), Supreme Court Reporter for the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune. 



If you plan to attend, please advise NACDL National Affairs Assistant Elsa Ohman via email at


NACDL’s joint amicus curiae briefs are available here: Florida v. Jardines and Florida v. Harris. 

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Featured Products

In addition, on September 14 and 21 respectively, NACDL released a two-part podcast on these cases featuring Danielle Spinelli, an NACDL member and principal author of NACDL’s joint amicus briefs in both Florida v. Jardines and Florida v. Harris; Dr. Lawrence Myers, a leading dog sniff expert who teaches at Auburn University; and NACDL’s National Security and Fourth Amendment Counsel Mason Clutter. These and all previous episodes of NACDL’s “The Criminal Docket” podcast series are available free of charge at as well as in Apple’s iTunes store.


The Criminal Docket

Criminal Docket Podcast Artwork"The Criminal Docket" provides a rundown of the highlights in criminal justice news from the prior week, and previews what's coming up on the criminal docket in state and federal agencies, legislatures and the courts. In addition, every episode explores important items on the criminal justice agenda, in-depth, with top leaders in the legal practice, public policy, journalism, academia, and others whose lives intersect with the criminal justice system. Learn More 


NACDL Communications Department

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal legal system.