JW brings this to our attention
Striking a blow for rebellious teenagers, the Washington Supreme Court ruled Thursday that state law prohibits parents from eavesdropping on a child’s phone conversations. The case reached the high court because of a purse-snatching. A 17-year-old boy was convicted of the robbery, in part on testimony from his girlfriend’s mother, who overhead him discussing the crime on the phone with her daughter.
The daughter had taken a cordless phone into her bedroom and closed the door. In another room, her mother pressed the speakerphone button on an extension, listened in and took notes. The court ruled that the daughter and her boyfriend had a reasonable expectation of privacy on the phone. Washington state law prohibits intercepting or recording conversations without the consent of all participants.
Of course, all that a parent has to do to remain legal is to require their child to sign a form consenting to intercepted recordings in order to use the parents’ telephone. Interestingly enough, the US government sees fit to eavesdrop on everyone inside and outside the United States with its Echelon system, but unlike a parent trying to raise a child, that level of oversight is necessary. Terrorists, don’t you know. Why, without it, we wouldn’t have caught bin Laden and prevented the 9/11 attacks….