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

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


Sounds like a sgood suppression isue. Hire a criminal defense lawyer.

I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense and personal injury/civil rights cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me at (212) 577-9797 or via email at I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. The above answer is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.

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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.

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