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- 1. Whether search/seizure is governed by the 4th Amendment
- 2. Whether search/seizure is conducted with with a warrant satisfies 4th Am requirements
- 3. Whether search/seizure conducted without a warrant satisfied 4th Am requirements
- 4. The extent to which evidence obtained through search/seizure that violates the 4th Am is nonentheless admissible
Issue 1: Is the search or seizure governed by the 4th Amendment?
- Question 1: Was the search/seizure executed by a government agent? government agents are publicly paid police and private citizens under police direction (not private security guards)
- Question 2: Did the search/seizure invade an individual's reasonable expectation of privacy? Protected against unreaosnable searches/seizures of persons, houses (including curtilage), papers, and effects. It does not protect items that are knowingly exposed to third parties. To challenge, you must have standing, that is, personal privacy rights must be invaded. Have standing if you own, reside, or are an overnight guest at premises searched. Have standing if you own property seized and expectation of privacy in area seized from.
- If the above is met, then police must get a warrant (unless exception applies)
Issue 2: Does the search warrant under which criminal evidence was gathered satisfy 4th Am requirements?
- Question 1: Is the warrant supported by probable cause and particularity?
- Probable cause requires proof of a "fair probability" that contraband or evidence of crime will be found in the area searched May rely on informant's tips (even anonymous); sufficiency rests on corroboration and magistrate must make "commonsense, practical" determination that probable cause exists based on totality of the circumstances.
- Particularity - the search warrant must specify the place to be searched and the item to be seized. Can't go on a fishing expedition.
- Warrant must be issued by a neutral and detached magistrate.
- Question 2: Does an officer's good faith save a defective search warrant? Yes, except in four situations.
- 1. affidavit supporting warrant application is facially and egregiously lacking in probable cause - no reasonable officer would rely
- 2. facially deficient in particularity - no officer would reasonably presume valid
- 3. affidavit supporting contains knowing or reckless falsehoods (must be necessary to PC finding)
- 4. magistrate is biased in favor of prosecution
- Question 3: Was the search warrant properly executed by the police? That is, whether complied with terms and limitations (can only search areas and items authorized) and knock and announce rule (police must announce presence and purpose before forcible entry, unless officer reasonably believes to be futile or dangerous or would inhibit investigation).
Issue 3: Is the warrantless search through which criminal evidence was gathered valid under any of the eight exceptions to the warrant requirement? ESCAPIST
- Exigent Circumstances: includes evanescent evidence and hot pursuit
- Search Incident to Arrest: lawful arrest and the search was at time and place of arrest; comprises grab area, any containers on the person or in the grab area, including car cabin but not trunk; must be contemporaneous in time and place; search in car must be related to the crime for which arrest was made
- Consent: must be voluntary and intelligent; apparent authority ok except for hotel operators, landlords, present objecting spouse
- Automobile: officer can search entire vehicle if believe it contains evidence of a crime; may open containers
- Plain View: 1) lawful access to the place; 2) lawful access to the item; and 3) criminality of the item must be immediately apparent
- Inventory Searches: lawful if regulations are reasonable in scope and search complies with regs
- Special Needs: random drug testing of RR ee's, customs agents, public school children in extracurriculars, govt ee desks (for work misconduct), student effects for violations of school rules, routine border searches
- Terry Stop/Frisk:
- stop = brief seizure for purpose of investigating supicious conduct; factors of seizure are usu. brandishing weapon, tone and demeanor, and told of right to refuse to consent; seized only if submits to officer's authority or restrained
- frisk = pat down of body and outer clothing for weapons and officer believes suspect is armed and dangerous; may only seize weapons and something recognized as contraband without manipulating object; may frisk car cabin if belief of weapon
- evidentiary standard = reasonable suspicion (less than PC) which is simply specific and articulable facts informing an officer's belief of (for stops) present criminal activity and (for frisks) suspect is armed and dangerous
Issue 4: to what extent can prosecutors use the evidence gathered in an unconstitutional search and seizure against the defendant in court? exclusionary rule
- Exclusionary rule: Evidence, whether physical or testimonial, that is obtained in violation of a federal statutory or constitutional provision is inadmissible in court against the individual whose rights were violated.
- can use to impeach in cross examine of D
- reasonable mistakes do not compel exclusion (two apartments: officers ceased search as soon as they realized the mistake)
- Evidence derived from unconstitutionally obtained evidence is fruit of the poisonous tree, unless independent source, inevitable discovery by lawful means, attenuation (passage of time and intervening event s restore D’s free will).