Category Archives: Curtilage

AL: Dog sniff at apt door unreasonable under Jardines

“We consider whether the use of a drug-sniffing dog to sniff the door seams of the apartment was, under the reasoning of Jardines, an illegal search in violation of Earl’s Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches. We … Continue reading

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S.D.Ga.: Renting a motel room doesn’t make their parking lot your curtilage

Just because defendant’s girlfriend rented a motel room and he was with her doesn’t make the motel parking lot their curtilage. “[N]ot even a hotel’s owner, to say nothing of its transitory guests, has a reasonable expectation of privacy in … Continue reading

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CA4: State court suppressed SW for lack of nexus, and then feds indicted; GFE applies to the state warrant

Defendant was prosecuted in state court for a drug related murder, and the state court suppressed the search of his house finding lack of nexus. State v. Miller, 2016 S.C. Unpub. LEXIS 28 (Mar. 30, 2016). Defendant was then prosecuted … Continue reading

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CA6: No REP in a shipped package after it was received by another

Defendant had no reasonable expectation of privacy in a package shipped to and then received by another. Moreover, there was probable cause for a search of the car the package was in and the package, too. United States v. Moore, … Continue reading

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D.Kan.: By not stopping before his driveway, def consented to police entry onto the curtilage

Officers attempted to stop defendant’s car but he drove to his driveway. There ultimately was a dog sniff of the car. The court finds that, by driving to his driveway with police behind him, his actions were consent for police … Continue reading

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N.D.Ill.: Shots fired call specifying def’s backyard was exigency permitting entry

A report of gunshots from defendant’s backyard justified exigency entry into yard. “In response to Officer Gali’s statement that they could do it the easy way or get a search warrant, Pouncey responded, ‘go ahead, bro.’ The Court reviewed the … Continue reading

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W.D.Ky.: Even if putting key in lock violated Jardines, its use in SW application was in good faith

Pre-Jardines case law held that putting a key in a lock wasn’t a search. Here, the police did that to help establish probable cause. Whether Jardines changed that rule or not, it’s not decided here because the good faith exception … Continue reading

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OH5: Knock-and-talk led to smell of MJ grow; entry for protective sweep before getting SW wasn’t unreasonable

Police came to do a knock-and-talk, and they could smell a marijuana grow from outside. They decided to do a protective sweep for people before they left to get a search warrant because they heard music from inside the home. … Continue reading

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FL5: State doesn’t get GFE on Birchfield where it came down day before def’s stop

Birchfield came down day before defendant’s arrest, and good faith exception isn’t applied. “Although it is understandable that a police officer might be unaware of the holding of a controlling court opinion within a day or two of its issuance, … Continue reading

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GA: Officers had PC a knife used in a murder was in a well; the SW said “curtilage” and didn’t have to say “well” to be valid

Officers obtained a search warrant involving a 34½ year old murder. After charges were filed the state sought a second search warrant to search a well for evidence. There was a substantial basis for searching the well based on the … Continue reading

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D.Mont.: Testing a key in house locks to see if it works was a trespass under Jones and Jardines requiring a SW

Defendant was admitted to a mental hospital after a police call to an erratic person. Because of his apparent mental condition, his backpack was searched by hospital guards. That revealed a knife, a gun, and a house key. ATF was … Continue reading

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WA: Affidavit and SW didn’t need to specify statutes of crimes under investigation when it was apparent it was murder

The search warrant of defendant’s place for trace evidence of a dead body rather than the body itself was reasonable because the police had information that the body had been burned in a fire pit. In addition, the affidavit and … Continue reading

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WI: Use of a tracking dog in a burglary that led to def’s house was reasonable and in hot pursuit

Police received a 4 am burglary call, and an officer with a dog tracking smell and the officer tracking footprints in the dew on the ground led to defendant’s property. The officer knocked and defendant’s mother let the police in. … Continue reading

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VT: Game wardens’ entry on def’s curtilage to investigate deer jacking was reasonable as was look through detached garage window

Defendant was suspected of “deer jacking,” shooting a deer from outside the window of a homeowner before 4 am on Thanksgiving Day 2017. A game warden investigated at the scene finding deer blood and hair. The game warden had a … Continue reading

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E.D.Wis.: Handgun hidden in a dog house wasn’t subject to search for exigency

Defendant’s handgun was hidden in a doghouse on the curtilage. The court distinguishes other cases allowing a search for a firearm, particularly one where a loaded shotgun was publicly put in the trunk of a car and the keys left … Continue reading

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GA: Police approaching back door of apartment violated curtilage

Officers investigating stolen property found the thieves who said they traded the property to defendant for drugs. They went to his apartment in a quadplex to talk to him. Getting no answer at the front door, they walked on the … Continue reading

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