OH: Plastic baggie caught in bookbag zipper wasn’t “immediately apparent” for plain view

“While executing an arrest warrant, police discovered a closed bookbag with a plastic baggie stuck in its zipper. Without obtaining a search warrant, they opened the bookbag and discovered illegal drugs. The question for us is whether the warrantless search comports with the Fourth Amendment under the ‘single-purpose-container exception’ to the warrant requirement. We hold that it does not. The exception applies only when the illegal nature of the contents of a package are readily apparent because of the distinctive characteristics of the package. A bookbag could hold a variety of items—some illegal, some not.” State v. Burroughs, 2022-Ohio-2146, 2022 Ohio LEXIS 1278 (June 28, 2022).

Unlawful tint on the back window didn’t violate the law, so the stop for it was without reasonable suspicion. Once stopped, the officers saw furtive movements in the car that arouse further suspicion. State v. Smith, 2022 N.J. LEXIS 568 (June 28, 2022).*

It is not a jurisdictional argument that “the municipal judge lacked authority to issue the first search warrant because it depended on ‘federal probable cause’ but executed solely by state officers without the participation of any federal authorities.” It also lacked merit as a Fourth Amendment claim. No CoA. Jones v. Harris, 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 17814 (6th Cir. June 27, 2022).

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