A warrant is usually required for police officers investigating a crime to search a defendant, and a search conducted absent a warrant may violate a person’s constitutional rights. However, there are exceptions, such as when an officer has a reasonable suspicion that an individual is committing a crime. In such circumstances, an investigatory stop might be justified. A Michigan court recently addressed the right against unreasonable search and seizure in a matter in which the defendant was charged with multiple offenses after an investigatory stop. If you are charged with a crime, you should speak to an experienced Michigan criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible regarding your rights.
The Facts of the Case
It is alleged that the police stopped the defendant at a gas station for carrying a concealed weapon without a warrant. An officer apparently noticed the pistol in the defendant’s waistband, as the handle protruding from his pants. The officer inquired whether the defendant had a permit to carry the weapon, to which the defendant replied that he did not. After the officer seized the pistol and arrested the suspect, he found heroin in the defendant’s possession as well.
Reportedly, the defendant was charged with multiple weapons offenses as well as heroin possession. He filed a motion to bar the prosecution from using the evidence obtained during his arrest against him at trial, claiming that it was obtained through an unlawful search and seizure. He further asserted that the gun was not hidden but was carried openly in compliance with the State’s open carry rule. The defendant’s motion was granted, and the State appealed. Continue reading