Title 12
Criminal Procedure

Chapter 5.1
Interception of Wire and Oral Communications

R.I. Gen. Laws § 12-5.1-2

§ 12-5.1-2. Application for orders.

(a) The attorney general, or an assistant attorney general specially designated by the attorney general, may apply ex parte to the presiding justice of the superior court of competent jurisdiction for an order authorizing the interception of any wire, electronic, or oral communications. Each application ex parte for an order must be in writing, subscribed and sworn to by the applicant.

(b) The application must contain:

(1) The identity of the officer making the application;

(2) A full and complete statement of the facts and circumstances relied upon by the applicant to justify his or her belief that an order should be issued, including:

(i) Details as to the particular designated offense that has been, is being, or is about to be committed;

(ii) A particular description of the nature and location of the facilities from which, or the place where, the communication is to be intercepted;

(iii) A particular description of the type of communications sought to be intercepted; and

(iv) The identity of the person, if known, committing the offense and whose communications are to be intercepted;

(3) A full and complete statement as to whether or not other investigative procedures have been tried and failed or why they reasonably appear to be unlikely to succeed if tried or to be too dangerous;

(4) A statement of the period of time for which the interception is required to be maintained. If the nature of the investigation is such that the authorization of interception should not automatically terminate when the described type of communication has been first obtained, a particular description of facts establishing probable cause to believe that additional communications of the same type will occur after the described type of communication has been first obtained;

(5) A full and complete statement of the facts concerning all previous applications, known to the individual making the application, made to the presiding justice of the superior court for authorization to intercept wire, electronic, or oral communications involving any of the same persons, facilities or places specified in the application, and the action taken by the presiding justice of the superior court on each application; and

(6) Where the application is for the extension of an order, a statement setting forth the results thus far obtained from the interception, or a reasonable explanation of the failure to obtain the results.

(c) The presiding justice of the superior court may require the applicant to furnish additional testimony or documentary evidence in support of the application.

(d) Allegations of fact in the application may be based either upon the personal knowledge of the applicant or upon information and belief. If the applicant personally knows the fact alleged, it must be so stated. If the facts establishing reasonable cause are derived in whole or in part from the statements of persons other than the applicant, the sources of the information and belief must be either disclosed or described, and the application must contain facts establishing the existence and reliability of the informant, or the reliability of the information supplied by the informant. The application must also state, so far as possible, the basis of the informant’s knowledge or belief. If the applicant’s information and belief is derived from tangible evidence or recorded oral evidence, a copy or detailed description of the evidence should be annexed to or included in the application. Affidavits of persons other than the applicant must be submitted in conjunction with the application if they tend to support any fact or conclusion alleged in the application. Accompanying affidavits may be based either on personal knowledge of the affiant, or information and belief with the source of the information and reason for the belief specified.

History of Section.
P.L. 1969, ch. 55, § 1; P.L. 1999, ch. 167, § 2.