Florida Supreme Court Denies Rush Limbaugh Appeal
The Florida Supreme Court has turned down conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh’s request to review a lower court decision that the state could seize his medical records. In a 4-3 decision, the court said it would not consider a motion for rehearing.
Limbaugh has been under investigation into whether he illegally went from doctor to doctor to get multiple painkiller prescriptions. He has not been charged and denies the allegation, saying investigators are on a fishing expedition aimed at embarrassing him.
In October, Florida’s 4th District Court of Appeal ruled that the state did not violate Limbaugh’s privacy rights when it seized his medical records with a search warrant. Limbaugh’s lawyer, Roy Black, has argued that using a warrant gave Limbaugh no opportunity to challenge the seizure. On Thursday, Black released a statement that said in part, “I have said from the start that there was no violation of the doctor-shopping statute, but that Rush Limbaugh should not have to give up his right to privacy in order to prove his innocence.
While I’m admittedly not well informed on medical law, I never have been able to understand Limbaugh’s claim here. When does a defendent ever have a right not to challenge a seizure before a warrant is issued? Indeed, that would practically invite the destruction of the evidence that the warrant sought to seize. Presumably, if a court later found that the warrant was improper and the search therefore invalid, any evidence that came from the search would be suppressed under the Fruit of the Poisonous Tree corollary to the Exclusionary Rule.