Justia Lawyer Rating
Best Lawyer
Super Lawyer - Top 100
Super Lawyer - Top 100
Best Lawyers
Avvo Rating 10.0
AV Preeminent
The National Trial Lawyers
The Best Lawyers in America
Best Lawyers
CLEA
Advocates for Justice
Business North Carolina Legal Elite - 2021
DUI Defense
NBTA
*For additional information regarding the criterion for inclusion or membership for lawyer associations, awards, & certifications click image for link.

Criminal Procedure - Outline Part 17

By Collin B. Hardee

Download the PDF version of this outline

<< Part 16 | Part 18 >>

Traffic Stops for General Criminal Investigation – Drug Checkpoint
  • Indianapolis v. Edmond (2000) → The police cannot use random warrantless traffic stops to pursue general criminal investigative objectives, i.e., they may not conduct warrantless traffic stops where the primary purpose is “to detect evidence of ordinary criminal wrongdoing.”
    • A search or seizure is ordinarily unreasonable in the absence of individualized suspicion of wrongdoing; court has recognized only limited circumstances in which this usual rule does not apply, i.e., suspicionless searches:
      • “Special needs”
      • Administrative purposes
      • Fixed Border Patrol checkpoints
      • Sobriety checkpoints
      • Roadblock with purpose of verifying drivers’ licenses and vehicle registrations
    • Never would a checkpoint program whose primary purpose was to detect evidence of ordinary criminal wrongdoing be constitutional without individualized suspicion
    • “Circumstances that MAY justify a law enforcement checkpoint where the primary purpose would otherwise, but for some emergency, relate to ordinary crime control:
      • Roadblock set up to thwart an imminent terrorist attack”
      • Roadblock to catch a dangerous criminal who is likely to flee by way of a particular route
        • “The exigencies created by these scenarios are far removed from the circumstances under which authorities might simply stop cars as a matter of course to see if there just happens to be a felon leaving the jurisdiction”
        • “We decline to approve a program whose primary purpose is ultimately indistinguishable from the general interest in crime control”
Drug Testing
  • Suspicionless drug testing (by means of urinalysis, breathalyzer, or blood) has been upheld by the Supreme Court in various circumstances:
    • Drug testing of railroad personnel involved in train accidents (Skinner v. Railway Labor Executives’ Association (1989));
    • Random drug testing of federal customs officers who carry weapons or are involved in drug interdiction (National Treasury Employees Union v. Von Raab (1989))
    • Random urine testing of school students involved in athletics (Vernonia School District 47J v. Acton (1995)) or other extracurricular activities (Board of Education of Independent School District No. 92 of Pottawatomie County v. Earls (2002))
  • In drug testing cases, the SC considers the “nature and immediacy” of the government’s concerns regarding drug use
    • Court has found a “compelling,” “substantial,” or “important” governmental or societal need for drug testing that could not be accommodated by application of ordinary probable cause or reasonable suspicion standards
  • This governmental interest of random drug testing is weighed against the individual’s privacy interest of those subjected to the testing
    • Blood, breath, and urine testing is minimal and not very intrusive
    • With the employees, their expectation of privacy was “diminished by reason of their participation in an industry . . . regulated pervasively to ensure safety.”
  • Not all suspicionless drug testing is allowed:
    • Chandler v. Miller (1997) → the 4th Amendment “shields society” from urinalysis drug testing that “diminishes personal privacy solely for a symbol’s sake.” (GA’s req. that candidates for state office pass a drug test “did not fit within the closely guarded category of constitutionally permissible suspicionless searches.”)
    • Ferguson v. City of Charleston (2001) → Testing for the objective of generating evidence for law enforcement purposes does not fit within the closely guarded category of “special needs” and required a search warrant
Chapter 5 – Remedies for Fourth Amendment Violations Standing
  • Two important 4th Amendment rules:
    • The Exclusionary Rule
      • Rule that evidence obtained in violation of the 4th Amendment is suppressed at trial
      • The police will less likely violate the 4th Amendment if they know that the fruits of their unconstitutional conduct will be excluded from a criminal trial
    • Standing
      • Before evidence can be excluded, a court must determine whether the person seeking exclusion has the right to bring the 4th Amendment claim
      • Alderman v. US (1969) → Each defendant (on an individual basis) has to prove, personally, that he had “standing” to raise the 4th Amendment claim – “The established principle is that suppression of the product of a 4th Amendment violation can be successfully urged only by those whose rights were violated by the search itself, not by those who are aggrieved solely by the introduction of damaging evidence.”
      • Jones v. US (1960) → “the 4th Amendment rights are personal rights which, like some other constitutional rights, may not be vicariously asserted.”
    • US v. Payner (1980)
      • IRS investigation of financial activities of US citizens in Bahamas. Payner’s belongings were not searched but the evidence implicated his wrongdoing
        • Paynor does NOT have standing to sue
        • Starting point for STANDING issue – is the defendant the person whose rights were violated?
  • Rakas v. Illinois (1978) → a defendant may seek to exclude evidence derived from a search or seizure only if his “legitimate expectation of privacy” (the Katz Test) was violated
    • Result? → A mere possessory interest in the premises searched, or mere presence at the scene of the search, will not confer standing, if the defendant had not legitimate expectation of privacy that was violated by the search
      • In Rakas, several automobile passengers, had no legitimate expectation of privacy with respect to the car’s interior
      • After Rakas, did the holder of the possessory interest have a legitimate expectation of privacy with respect to the premises?
    • Presence at Scene of Search
      • Target Theory Rejected – The theory that any defendant at whom a search is “directed” has standing to contest the legality of the search was rejected by SC b/c it would involve difficulties in determining who the person at whom a search was directed was
      • New Approach new one-stop analysis of 4th Amendment cases, by which the standing issue no longer exists as a distinct question, but is instead handled as part of a single inquiry into whether the defendant had a legitimate expectation of privacy which was unreasonably violated by the search
      • Presence at Search NOT Automatically Sufficient – legitimate presence on the premises searched would NOT by itself allow a constitutional challenge to that search b/c it might “permit a casual visitor who has never seen, or been permitted to visit the basement of another’s house to object to a search of the basement if the visitor happened to be in the kitchen of the house at the time of the search.”
  • Are Homes Like Cars When It Comes to Standing?
    • Minnesota v. Olson (1990) → an overnight guest has a legitimate expectation of privacy and therefore has standing to object to the police’s warrantless entry of the premises where the guest is staying
  • Minnesota v. Carter (1998) → a business visitor to premises will normally NOT have standing to object to a search of the premises, at least where the visit is a brief one unaccompanied by any real personal relationship between guest and host; this is true even where the visit takes place at a home rather than office or other traditional place of business; i.e., someone temporarily in another’s house, and present to conduct a business transaction, does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the house
  • Rawlings v. Kentucky (1980) → the Rakas test – whether the petitioner had a reasonable expectation of privacy in the area searched – is the exclusive test for determining whether a defendant may successfully challenge a search
    • Facts: police ordered a woman to empty her purse, which the defendant put LSD in with her permission; defendant claimed ownership over the LSD found within the purse
    • Held: Defendant did NOT have a legitimate expectation of privacy in the search of the woman’s purse
    • Rule: Ownership is only one factor of the test
Client Reviews
★★★★★
I am so fortunate to have had Bill Powers on my case. Upon our first meeting, Bill insisted that through the emotions of anger, sadness, confusion, and betrayal that I remain resilient. He was available to answer questions with researched, logical, truthful answers throughout our two year stretch together. I went to any lengths for my case because he won my trust almost immediately... J.R.
★★★★★
My daughter had a second DUI and when it all seemed hopeless, Bill was able to get the charges dropped. This is a man who is extremely knowledgeable, yet still keeps his integrity which was impressive to me. He handles himself with dignity. If you hire him, you will have the best of the best, along with his expansive intellect and wisdom about the law. Lisa
★★★★★
Bill Powers’ staff has handled several traffic citations for me over the years, and they exceeded my expectations each and every time. Would highly recommend anyone faced with a traffic citation or court case contact his office and they will handle it from there. M.C.
★★★★★
Bill and his staff are flat out great. I (unfortunately) was a repeat customer after a string of tickets. These guys not only took care of the initial ticket for me, but went the extra mile and reduced my problems from 3 to just 1 (very minor one) on the same day I called back! I would recommend them to anyone. A.R.