Thursday, March 28, 2013

Hey Officer, Do You Have a Light?

Odor-based drug searches by police can raise some complex legal questions. For example, yesterday’s Supreme Court decision tossing out a warrantless dog-sniffing search for marijuana involves such arcane legal concepts as curtilage (an area “immediately surrounding and associated with the home,” such as a porch).

Sometimes, however, it’s an easy call. Like last Tuesday in Totowa, New Jersey, just a ten-minute drive from First Nerve Manor. Three guys were waiting for their friend to pick up his car from the auto impound. While waiting they sparked up a doobie—in the parking lot of the state police barracks. A trooper caught wind of it and busted them for possession of fifteen bags of weed and 14 tabs of Ecstasy. Two of the perps had outstanding arrest warrants.

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