Sunday, June 24, 2007

Ownership of Purse Must Be Established For Search

State v. Smith, no. 06-1117, (Iowa Ct. App. June 13, 2007)

A vehicle traveling without taillights was stopped by a Waterloo officer. The officer asked the driver for consent to search the car which was granted, although the officer had no reason such as a suspicion of criminal activity to ask for permission in the first place.

Smith, a passenger, was asked out of the car and a purse was found on the front seat. The officer searched the purse and found Smith's identification and a meth pipe. Smith moved to suppress the evidence seized and the district court granted the motion. Discretionary review followed.

The court determined that the consent of the driver in this particular case did not authorize a search of the purse.

A thumbs up to the Court of Appeals-four days before Brendlin v. California, too.

Are we good in Iowa or or what?


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