Thursday, August 27, 2009

Challenge to Search Warrant Fails

State v. Nearman, no. 08-1622 (Iowa Ct. App. August 6, 2009).

This starts out like a Cheech and Chong skit.

A car was stopped by police in Woodbury County and the occupants admitted they'd been smoking marijuana and were on their way to Nearman's to buy a pound. Based on those statements police obtained a search warrant for Nearman's home and executed it, impounding 6 pounds of marijuana, $14,000 in case, scales, and baggies.

Nearman filed a motion to suppress, alleging that the warrant was not supported by probable cause. The court disagreed, stating that the statements of the informants clearly indicated the existence of a nexus between marijuana and evidence of drug dealing and Nearman's house on the day in question. Nearman next argued that the statements of the informants were not independently corroborated.

Applying the seven part test announced in State v. Niehaus, 452 N.W.2d 184 (Iowa 1990) the court found sufficient information regarding the veracity and basis of knowledge of the two informants to conclude the information was truthful.


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