Breaking: Attorney Claims Unconstitutional Warrantless Searches in Iowa College Athlete Gambling Case
Issued: January 23, 2024, 06:48h.
Last updated: January 24, 2024, 11:40h.
Attorney Van Plumb has filed documents in the Story County District Court alleging that evidence used to accuse 41 Iowa college athletes of gambling violations was obtained through unconstitutional warrantless searches conducted by a special agent with the state’s Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI). Plumb is representing former Iowa State defensive lineman Isaiah Lee and Eyioma Uwazurike.
Isaiah Lee is facing aggravated misdemeanor charges for betting against his team in a 2021 football game. He is accused of using his mother’s account to conceal his identity while placing bets on DraftKings. On the other hand, Eyioma Uwazurike allegedly used his girlfriend’s account to place bets.
Plumb’s documents accuse DCI agent Brian Sanger of using AI technology to place a GeoFence around a University of Iowa dormitory without a warrant or any evidence that underage gambling was occurring. This action raises concerns about potential violations of the athletes’ Fourth Amendment rights, as law enforcement officers are required to establish “probable cause” to conduct searches.
Furthermore, Sanger’s superiors initially halted the investigation before reversing their decision and allowing it to proceed. During Sanger’s deposition, he admitted to not remembering why he decided to conduct the warrantless searches, citing concerns about infiltration of sports teams and match-fixing as reasons for his actions.
Sanger’s investigation led to accusations against 26 Iowa and 15 Iowa State athletes, with nine pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges of underage gambling. However, most of the other charges were dismissed due to a lack of actual criminal activity.
Plumb has criticized Sanger’s use of software to access private information without a warrant, raising concerns about unconstitutional searches and seizures. He has highlighted the potential Constitutional issues surrounding the case.
This development raises questions about the legality of the evidence used in the case, as well as the rights of the accused athletes. The allegations of unconstitutional searches could have significant implications for the outcome of the case.