Category Archives: Plain view, feel, smell

S.D.Ind.: CSLI search two years before Carpenter was valid under GFE

The Seventh Circuit held in dicta in 2014 that CSLI didn’t need a warrant. United States v. Thousand, 558 Fed. Appx. 666, 670 (7th Cir. 2014). The search here was two years before Carpenter. Davis good faith applies, and the … Continue reading

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S.D.N.Y.: Realtime cell phone tracking SW issued with PC

The USPS developed probable cause that defendant was shipping drugs by mail with his own mini mailing service, creating his own mailing labels and having acquired plenty of USPS envelopes and postage to do it. When another suspicious package came … Continue reading

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N.D.Cal.: Smell of MJ from passenger compartment is PC only as to that area

The smell of marijuana came from the passenger compartment, and the court finds that the probable cause that it creates is limited to the passenger compartment under the automobile exception. United States v. Chavez, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 107695 (N.D. … Continue reading

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MD: Odor of MJ from the person is PC to search the person

The odor of marijuana provides probable cause to believe that marijuana is present, and therefore, the smell of marijuana emanating from a vehicle provides probable cause to believe that contraband or evidence of a crime will be in the vehicle … Continue reading

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DE: Facebook messages def was reselling MMJ was part of the PC

A medical marijuana provider told police that it appeared that defendant was reselling that which she acquired legally. They messaged her through Facebook as a potential buyer, and she essentially admitted it. The search warrant was issued on probable cause … Continue reading

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CT: Seeing sawed off shotgun through van window justified opening it up to seize it

The officers here saw a sawed off shotgun through the windows of defendant’s van, and it was not unreasonable to use the key fob to open the door to seize it. State v. Ortiz, 2018 Conn. App. LEXIS 235 (June … Continue reading

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E.D.Mich.: Gant didn’t bar a plain view of the interior of def’s car when he was handcuffed on ground

Defendant was arrested for drug dealing, and he was handcuffed on the ground near the car. The search of the car here was based on seeing a gun in the car in plain view, so Gant doesn’t bar the search. … Continue reading

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NJ: Officer’s purpose in momentarily putting head in window of car was to hear def over road noise was not search; plain smell sustained

The officer momentarily put his head in the window of defendant’s car to better hear him, and then he smelled marijuana. The purpose of the intrusion was benign and not to conduct a search, and it was not unreasonable. State … Continue reading

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VA: Gun in plain view left in car was seizable under Long

Defendant fled from a car, and a gun was in plain view in the car. The officer acted reasonably in searching the car to secure the firearm under Michigan v. Long [aside from abandonment of the car] because defendant could … Continue reading

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AZ: Trial court didn’t make finding on Strickland IAC prejudice for failure to argue curtilage; remanded

Defense counsel deliberatedly didn’t make a claim officers violated curtilage in their initial entry to defendant’s property. The first search warrant application was rejected by one judge. The affidavit was redrafted with additional facts and presented to a second judge … Continue reading

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N.D.Tex.: PV of short-barreled rifle and silencer was valid; incriminating nature immediately apparent

The incriminating nature of a short-barreled rifle and a homemade suppressor was immediately apparent for plain view purposes. United States v. Tidrow, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81807 (N.D. Tex. May 15, 2018). “Prior to the stop of the vehicle, law … Continue reading

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WY: Patdown led to plain feel of drugs in watch pocket

During a patdown, the officer felt what was likely drugs in the “coin pocket” (called a watch pocket) and it was immediately apparent to him. Therefore, plain feel applied. Maestas v. State, 2018 WY 47, 2018 Wyo. LEXIS 49 (May … Continue reading

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