Possession of Marijuana
Weapons Charges: 4 Counts
Delivery and Manufacturing Narcotics 50-449 Grams
All Charges - Dismissed
This case began when Pontiac, MI, police arrived at the home of Attorney Jordan’s client. When the police knocked on the defendant’s door, he answered. They asked him for his name, which he gave. They then asked for proof of his identity. When Mr. Jordan’s client turned his back to get his ID, the officers came inside. They did not have a warrant to search the home.
Mr. Jordan’s client shared the home with his stepson who had a warrant charging him with two counts of assault with intent to murder.
While the police were in the home they found a gun, marijuana and cocaine.
In court, Attorney Jordan argued that the cops had no basis to go inside his client’s residence and that any evidence found in the home should be suppressed. His client testified that he was never asked and never offered for the cops to come in. The cops testified that they could not remember if they asked for consent to enter.
The judge agreed that the “so-called” evidence that cops found in the home must be suppressed because the defendant’s constitutional rights must be protected. Upon this ruling, Mr. Jordan moved to dismiss the case against his client.
Fourth Amendment Protects Against Illegal Search and Seizures*
Whenever law enforcement is engaging in a search and seizure, there are a number of rules, and exceptions, that apply. These rules are derived directly from the U.S. Constitution, specifically the Fourth Amendment, as well as court opinions.
The Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution provides that "the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."
The ultimate goal of this provision is to protect people’s right to privacy and freedom from unreasonable intrusions by the government. However, the Fourth Amendment does not guarantee protection from all searches and seizures, but only those done by the government and deemed unreasonable under the law.
To claim violation of Fourth Amendment as the basis for suppressing a relevant evidence, the court had long required that the claimant must prove that he himself was the victim of an invasion of privacy to have a valid standing to claim protection under the Fourth Amendment. However, the Supreme Court has departed from such requirement, issue of exclusion is to be determined solely upon a resolution of the substantive question whether the claimant's Fourth Amendment rights have been violated, which in turn requires that the claimant demonstrates a justifiable expectation of privacy, which was arbitrarily violated by the government.
In general, most warrantless searches of private premises are prohibited under the Fourth Amendment, unless specific exception applies. For instance, a warrantless search may be lawful, if an officer has asked and is given consent to search; if the search is incident to a lawful arrest; if there is probable cause to search and there is exigent circumstance calling for the warrantless search. Exigent circumstances exist in situations where people are in imminent danger, where evidence faces imminent destruction, or prior to a suspect's imminent escape.
On the other hand, warrantless search and seizure of properties are not illegal, if the objects being searched are in plain view. Further, warrantless seizure of abandoned property, or of properties on an open field do not violate Fourth Amendment, because it is considered that having expectation of privacy right to an abandoned property or to properties on an open field is not reasonable.
Source: Cornell Law School – Legal Information Institute
About Attorney Carl Jordan
With an extensive background in criminal law, Carl Jordan understands how important experience, preparation, and strategy are to any defense. Immediately upon being retained, he devises a comprehensive plan to ensure the best possible outcome. All options, including dismissal or reduction in charges will be explored. If you’ve been accused of any type of felony or misdemeanor in Michigan you need a knowledgeable and experienced attorney. Don’t wait to get the legal advice and legal representation needed to keep a felony offense from changing the rest of your life. Contact Carl Jordan at 248 358-6647 or text him at 313 282-0869.