Post-Arrest, Pre-Miranda Silence
Deep Throat and the Reporter's Privilege

Amusing Fourth Amendment Case

Darrell Quaempts’ trailer home was so small that he could open the front door while lying in his bed. His doing so on one unfortunate occasion, in response to the knock of Yakima Nation police officers, resulted in his warrantless arrest for sexual assault.
The government contends on appeal that when Quaempts opened the door to the officers, he waived any expectation of privacy in his home. It relies on our majority opinion in United States v. Vaneaton, 49 F.3d 1423 (9th Cir. 1995), holding that an individual who opens the door to police officers, and stands on the threshold of his home, may be arrested without a warrant to enter the home, because the threshold of the home is a public place. Quaempts was not standing in the doorway of his home, however, he was in his bed. By reaching over and opening the door he did not waive the expectation of privacy expressly guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment to all persons to be secure in their houses. We therefore affirm the district court’s [suppression] order.

United States v. Quaempts, No. 03-30471, slip op. at 3, (9th Cir. May 31, 2005).