Criminal defense issues in Mississippi, and other states, aren’t as clear-cut as you might think. The law is always evolving in some way and some cases have unique details. One such traffic case potentially has more serious consequences, which the Supreme Court is set to take on this year.
Police dog enthusiasm may be a problem
During a traffic stop in Mountain Home, Idaho in 2019, an officer stopped a car after the driver made an improper turn and crossed three lanes of traffic. A police dog name Nero and his handler arrived after the stop. Nero jumped up, putting his paws on the car’s driver’s side door and window. This led to Nero sniffing out meth in the vehicle. The police got a warrant and searched the individual’s motel room, where they found more drugs.
A surprising court decision
Even though the executive director of the U.S. Police Canine Association states that K-9 dogs will put their front legs on a car to balance if they’re searching out a scent, Idaho’s Supreme Court ruled that Nero’s actions went beyond what should be allowed during a search and seizure case.
Since there was no search warrant at the time Nero first arrived on the scene, this makes the case more complex. As a result, it moves on to the federal level. The U.S. Supreme Court will decide this fall if they will hear the case.
The search and seizure task must be done using certain standards and rules. When something goes outside of these bounds, the courts decide if the case is valid or if it should be thrown out. Be aware of your rights if you’re facing charges after a search and seizure in your vehicle or home.