If a dog alerts on a vehicle and allows a search does that eliminate the requirement for a warrant to open a locked container?

Asked over 1 year ago - New York, NY

a friend of mine was searched by police who were tipped off by a C.I that he was transporting drugs. police used a dog to get probable cause to search the car. after an extremely long search they discovered a sealed, locked container in which they thought contained drugs. the dog never gave any indication that the container contained drugs but officers busted open and destroyed the container anyway. ultimately the container did if fact have something inside of it but no warrant was ever requested or sought. even though at that point probably cause existed to further detain the people does this allow the police to bypass the warrant requirements? is this not a violation of due process? or can police do anything they chose once a informant tips them off and a dog alerts on their car?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. John J. Carney


    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . Retain a good criminal lawyer from the Avvo list in Manhattan. I have had 30 years experience and suppression hearings are very hard to win. It all depends on the facts of the case. If you are indigent the court will appoint Legal Aid but you are better off with a private lawyer on a serious felony. Please choose "best answer" if this helped you.

  2. Gray Richard Proctor


    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . IIRC, the whole "locked container in a car" line of cases is not good law anymore. ANything in a car is subject to a reduced expectation of privacy, period. California v. Acevedo.

    Answers are for informational purposes, not legal advice for your specific situation. www.appealsandhabeas.com
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