Category Archives: Plain view, feel, smell

OR: Syringe was plain view even if not contraband per se

A syringe, although not contraband per se, satisfied the immediately apparent prong of plain view. State v. Wise-Welsh, 318 Ore. App. 146, 2022 Ore. App. LEXIS 357 (Mar. 2, 2022). “Given these inconsistences, it is impossible to determine ‘exactly what … Continue reading

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TN: Smell of drugs during execution of SW permits detaining occupants

Based on the smell of drugs when executing a search warrant, the officers had the authority to detain the occupants. Linsey v. State, 2022 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 79 (Feb. 25, 2022). Defendant’s stop was reasonable. Shots had been reported … Continue reading

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LA5: Motorist assist led to plain smell and valid search

Police were called for a motorist assist to unlock a car. Once opened, the car smelled of marijuana, and that created probable cause. The police were invited to the curtilage. State v. Keller, 2022 La. App. LEXIS 247 (La. App. … Continue reading

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D.Conn.: Dropping a bag when stopped, walking away from it, and then denying having it was abandonment

Defendant had a red Nike bag on him when the car was stopped, and he got out of the car and dropped it on the ground and walked away from it. When questioned about the bag, he denied he’d dropped … Continue reading

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WaPo: U.S. Capitol Police rejects GOP congressman’s claim that check of his open office is illegal investigation

WaPo: U.S. Capitol Police rejects GOP congressman’s claim that check of his open office is illegal investigation (“Chief Tom Manger said a Capitol Police officer entered Rep. Troy E. Nehls’s office in November because the door was left ‘open and … Continue reading

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TX: Exclusionary rule is statutory and harmless error analysis required

The Texas exclusionary rule is statutory and not a constitutional remedy since 1922. Thus, harmless error analysis is required, and the case remanded for that. Holder v. State, 2022 Tex. Crim. App. LEXIS 72 (Feb. 2, 2022). “Accordingly, under the … Continue reading

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CA9: Govt “tucked” independent source argument into another and then abandoned it for years; not fully developed

The government’s independent source argument was (1) tucked into another argument and then not fully developed, and (2) then essentially abandoned for years during the litigation. It was not fully developed. United States v. Osborne, 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 2682 … Continue reading

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E.D.Tenn.: Smell of raw marijuana on def’s clothes supported PC it was in car

The officer testified that he first smelled raw marijuana about a minute into the stop. When he got defendant into the patrol car, he could smell it on defendant’s person. That was probable cause for a search of the car … Continue reading

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M.D.Pa.: Stopping UPS truck for dog sniff of packages wasn’t unreasonable

Of two coconspirators in a package containing drugs, the named sender has standing but the coconspirator does not. Stopping the UPS truck for a dog sniff of the packages did not interfere with any reasonable expectation of privacy. Besides, there … Continue reading

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MS: Open fields covered by state const.; warrant required for administrative search

A warrant is required for administrative searches under the Mississippi constitution, which also protects all land owned by the complainant, including open fields. Plain view is inapplicable here. The exclusionary rule applies to this administrative search and seizure. Okhuysen v. … Continue reading

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E.D.Cal.: Garnishment of wages is not a 4A seizure

Garnishment of wages is not a Fourth Amendment seizure. Williams v. Drakaina Logistics, 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 248750 (E.D.Cal. Dec. 30, 2021). Defendant’s property was seized on exigency after an apparent crime, and seizure was required to prevent destruction. United … Continue reading

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TX5: Knowledge def regularly deleted info from cell phone was exigency for seizure

The officers had information that defendant routinely deleted information from his call logs and text messages. That was exigency for a warrantless seizure of the phone. A later warrant was obtained for the phone. Veal v. State, 2021 Tex. App. … Continue reading

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OH11: Plain view during FD response to fire leading to call to police was reasonable

Defendant’s house burned in a fire, and the fire investigator came in before the firemen left. Drugs were found in plain view and in a safe with an open door. The trial court suppressed, but the court of appeals reversed. … Continue reading

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UT: Material change in circumstances found before warrant served should go back to magistrate, but this wasn’t material

Defendant was suspected of attempted video voyeurism, and a search warrant was issued for his gray cell phone. Shortly thereafter, it was discovered that was the wrong phone because it was a white one. Under plain error review, the warrant … Continue reading

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S.D.W.Va.: Court doesn’t believe plain view was possible

The gun under defendant’s pickup truck seat at knee high was not visible to the officer standing outside the truck looking down. The picture in the record belies it, so the officer isn’t credible. Suppressed. United States v. Bumgarner, 2021 … Continue reading

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N.D.Ill.: There can’t be a pretextual SW for a plain view; it’s objectively reasonable or not

Court rejects claim that search warrant could be pretextual to seize something else in plain view. That’s a foray into subjective intent the court won’t do. United States v. Contreras, 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 242185 (N.D.Ill. Dec. 20, 2021):

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Cal.2d: Unconscious driver’s serious injury was exigency for warrantless blood draw

“When a driver is unconscious, the general rule is a warrant is not needed. (Mitchell, supra, 139 S.Ct. at p. 2531.) The Fourth Amendment “almost always” permits a warrantless blood test when police officers do not have a reasonable opportunity … Continue reading

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CA6: Looking under bed in a protective sweep still was plain view

The officer had to kneel down to look under defendant’s bed in a protective sweep, and he saw a gun. The gun was still in plain view, and the officer was legitimately in place. United States v. Fields, 2021 U.S. … Continue reading

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LA5: Two CIs provided RS for def’s vehicle stop without need for traffic offense

The trial court’s denial of suppress is affirmed. There were two CIs. One provided details about defendant’s drug operation and the places and vehicles involved. The other provided predictive information that panned out. By the time defendant’s vehicle was stopped, … Continue reading

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N.D.Tex.: Syringe in back pocket was in plain view

The court finds the syringe in defendant’s back pocket was in plain view. United States v. Riggins, 2021 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 224594 (N.D.Tex. Nov. 22, 2021).* Defendant’s stop wasn’t unreasonably prolonged, so the dash and bodycam videos are not suppressed. … Continue reading

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