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How long can police hold my cellphone as evidence without charges?

Saint Paul, MN |

Police search my home for property they said I stole, but when they didnt find anything they decided to take my iPhone that wasnt on the search warrant. Now its been 3 months and I still have yet to get the phone back even after I call multiple times, sometimes they wouldnt even return my messages. I'm just trying to find a legal way to get my phone back

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Contact a criminal defense attorney in your area to contact the seizing officer and request the return of your property. The police may can hold your phone for a reasonable period of time as "evidence" of a crime but if you are not charged, it should be returned to you.

    I am trying to give you a general answer to your question. We do not have an attorney-client relationship by this response on the avvo website. I have not been retained to represent you. I am licensed to practice law in Kentucky and in federal court in this state and the Southern District of Indiana. You need to seek legal advice from an attorney licensed to practice in your area..


  2. Unfortunately, you may have to get a court order to have this happen. Contact a local criminal defense lawyer. They may be able to get something to happen.

    Remember, though, the adage about sleeping dogs!

    If any answer on AVVO helps you, mine or someone else’s, please mark it as "helpful" or "best answer" to help AVVO know which answers to show others.

    Thank you.

    --- Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Madison, Wisconsin
    http://addbalance.com

    --- Talking to the Police - Advice from Lawyers and Police
    http://addbalance.com/police.htm

    --- Miranda Rights (and Wrongs)
    http://addbalance.com/miranda_rights.htm

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    Confidential information should not be disclosed in this Internet forum. I am a Wisconsin lawyer. The laws in each jurisdiction can be very different. I cannot give legal advice over the internet nor can I establish an attorney client relationship with you. You should NOT assume or otherwise conclude that there is an attorney -client relationship between any reader and this writer or his firm. These comments are only guideposts. They are not subject to any privilege protections. Indeed, these internet communications are neither privileged nor confidential. Accordingly, those using this form of communication need to be guarded in what they write. Because of the nature of these communications the information is general only and should not be relied upon in any specific case. This internet site is public forum, where the communications are not confidential or privileged. There may very well be merit to your defense or position in this type of situation. However, there are hardly sufficient details for an attorney to provide you with some path to follow. It is imperative that ALL of the facts in a particular situation be examined. No conclusion can be drawn from the communication that you have provided. There are some matters that are just better handled by an attorney familiar with the procedures of the courts in your area. Most, if not all, legal matters should not be handled via internet communication. At best, the responders on this site can give you a few hints and guidance. To deal with a legal problem, nothing is better than to consult with a lawyer who will give you some time and advice. If you cannot afford an attorney, there should be agencies in your area that can provide discounted, or even free, legal services. Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin http://addbalance.com Talking to the Police - Advice from Lawyers and Police: http://addbalance.com/police.htm

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