CA4: Entry into house while waiting for SW to be procured doesn’t require suppression

Police entered defendant’s house to secure it after sending one officer to get a search warrant. The entry didn’t require suppression of evidence because there was an independent source for the information in the search warrant application. United States v. Agent, 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 8296 (4th Cir. Mar. 20, 2019):

Here, we decline to address whether the police officers’ initial entry into the residence and seizure of Agent was proper because we find that the evidence is admissible under the independent source doctrine. The independent source doctrine allows for the admissibility of evidence if it would have been obtained independently of an illegal search. See United States v. Bullard, 645 F.3d 237, 244 (4th Cir. 2011). Pursuant to this doctrine, a finding of an unlawful warrantless entry or search does not automatically render excludable the items seized during a subsequent search done pursuant to a valid search warrant. See Murray v. United States, 487 U.S. 533, 542 (1988) (“So long as a later, lawful seizure is genuinely independent of an earlier, tainted one … there is no reason why the independent source doctrine should not apply.”). Suppression of the evidence obtained is appropriate only if the subsequently issued warrant was tainted by the illegal entry. United States v. Campbell, 945 F.2d 713, 714 (4th Cir. 1991). In other words, evidence seized pursuant to a subsequently issued warrant is admissible so long as the search done pursuant to the warrant was genuinely an independent source of the information and evidence at issue. United States v. Walton, 56 F.3d 551, 554 (4th Cir. 1995).

This entry was posted in Independent source. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.