AR: Officer letting himself in because it was raining after homeowner answered knock on door was not implied consent

The officer here came to the door and knocked. When the occupant opened the door, the officer entered because it was raining. The trial court found implied consent. The court of appeals disagrees. It was acquiescence. Abernathy v. State, 2021 Ark. App. 79, 2021 Ark. App. LEXIS 104 (Feb. 24, 2021):

Having applied the proper standard of review to a suppression challenge, Davis v. State, 351 Ark. 406, 94 S.W.3d 892 (2003), we conclude that the State failed to meet its burden of proving by clear and positive testimony that Johnson “consented” to Rucker’s entry as the State contends. In his testimony, Johnson denied ever inviting Rucker into the home or giving him any indication that he could come inside the home. And to his credit, Officer Rucker did not claim that he was invited into the home. In fact, he admitted that he stepped into the threshold “for convenience” and to get out of the pouring rain. But there is no weather exception to the federal and state constitutional protections against a warrantless entry into a home by law enforcement. Therefore, based on the totality of the circumstances, we hold that the circuit court erred in denying Abernathy’s motion to suppress and that evidence obtained by police during the subsequent illegal entry should have been suppressed as fruit of the poisonous tree. And because there is no other evidence supporting Abernathy’s conviction, we reverse the conviction and remand for an order consistent with this opinion.

This entry was posted in Consent. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.