Skip to content
Name: People v. Cartwright (2024) 99 Cal.App.5th 98
Case #: D080606
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 01/25/2024

Trial court did not err in denying defendant’s motion to suppress video footage from the City of San Diego’s streetlight camera program and evidence derived from that footage. As part of its “City IQ” streetlight program, the City of San Diego maintains fixed cameras throughout the city that capture only the public right of way. Defendant was arrested in connection with a robbery and murder at a flooring store after video footage from the City’s cameras revealed defendant’s gold GMC Yukon arriving and departing the area on the day of the incident. Defendant’s motion to suppress the camera footage was…

View Full Summary
Name: United States v. Carey
Case #: 14-50222
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 09/07/2016

Police may use evidence obtained in "plain hearing" when they overhear speakers unrelated to the target conspiracy while monitoring a valid federal wiretap. Federal agents obtained a wiretap order for a San Diego phone number based on evidence that Escamilla was using that number in a drug trafficking operation. Agents monitoring the wiretap heard a number of drug-related conversations, but soon realized that Escamilla was not using the phone. They continued listening on the theory that the people using the phone were part of Escamilla's conspiracy. Based on the evidence gathered, the agents initiated a traffic stop, at which time…

View Full Summary
Name: United States v. Lundin
Case #: 14-10365
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 03/22/2016

Search did not fall under exigent circumstances exception to the warrant requirement because officers created the exigency by knocking on defendant's door at 4:00 a.m. Police went to Lundin's home at 4:00 a.m. to arrest him for a number of offenses that occurred earlier that day. After the officers knocked on the front door, they heard several crashing noises coming from the back of the house. The officers ordered Lundin to come out with his hands up. He complied, and was handcuffed and put in a patrol car. Thereafter, officers searched the house and found incriminating evidence. Lundin moved to…

View Full Summary
Name: United States v. Fowlkes
Case #: 11-50273
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 09/28/2015

Officer's warrantless seizure of plastic baggie protruding from inmate's rectum was unreasonable under the Fourth Amendment. Fowlkes was arrested for drug possession and distribution. During a strip search at the jail conducted by five officers, one of the officers noticed a baggie protruding from Fowlkes' rectum. After Fowlkes tried to push the baggie back into his rectum, the officer used a stun gun to shock him. Four officers handcuffed Fowlkes and held him down while another grabbed the protruding portion of the baggie and pulled it out. The district court denied Fowlkes' motion to suppress the drugs found inside him.…

View Full Summary
Name: People v. Michael E.
Case #: A138712
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 10/03/2014

Trial court erred in denying motion to suppress because police officer's warrantless search of defendant's computer exceeded the scope of a prior private search by a computer technician. Michael E. pled guilty to felony possession of child pornography after his motion to suppress evidence found on his computer was denied. While Michael's computer was at a computer repair shop, a computer technician, Statham, opened files containing pictures of underage girls posing in a sexually suggestive manner. He called the police, who concluded that the pictures did not qualify as child pornography and asked Statham to search Michael's computer for other…

View Full Summary
Name: People v. Lester
Case #: E055009
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 10/07/2013
Subsequent History: Review granted 1/15/2014: S214648

Defendant serving indeterminate Three Strikes sentence that was not final when the Three Strikes Reform Act (Proposition 36) was enacted is not entitled to an automatic sentence reduction under the new law. A jury convicted Lester of possessing drugs for sale with enhancements and found he had three strike priors. On October 28, 2011, he was sentenced to 25 years to life, plus six years. On appeal, he argued that his sentence should automatically be reduced based on Proposition 36 and In re Estrada (1965) 63 Cal.2d 740. Held: Affirmed. On November 6, 2012, Proposition 36 was enacted while Lester's…

View Full Summary
Name: U.S. v. Thomas
Case #: 11-10451
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 08/08/2013

It was improper for the government to supply the defense with heavily redacted records concerning a drug-detention dog's training and performance history. As appellant drove through the primary inspection at the Arizona border, a drug-detection dog exhibited "alert behavior," and appellant was detained. A human officer then brought the dog to appellant's vehicle and, directing the dog, had him jump up to the tool box. The dog again alerted and the box was searched. Bundles of marijuana weighing 150 pounds were located inside the locked tool box. Prior to a suppression hearing, appellant was provided a record of the dog's…

View Full Summary
Name: People v. Werner
Case #: H037156
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 6 DCA
Opinion Date: 07/20/2012

A generalized concern for officer safety without an articulable factual basis does not justify a warrantless search under the protective sweep doctrine. Appellant was arrested and handcuffed outside his home based on a reported domestic violence incident earlier in the day. Appellant asked his roommate to retrieve shoes and keys for him. A deputy accompanied the roommate into the house "for officer safety reasons." While they were in appellant's bedroom, the deputy observed drugs and illegal fireworks in plain view. During subsequent searches based on consent and a search warrant, deputies found more drugs and other items. Appellant pleaded…

View Full Summary
Name: People v. Torres
Case #: B233368
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 8
Opinion Date: 05/02/2012

The strong smell of marijuana in a hotel hallway did not provide exigent circumstances justifying a warrantless entry into a room. Appellants pled no contest to burglary and grand theft after the denial of their motion to suppress evidence. Police were investigating the report of a burglary at a hotel when they were directed to a room in which hotel security believed the burglary suspects were located. At the door, police smelled marijuana. Officers knocked on the door and when a woman opened it, they directed the occupants to exit the room. During a protective sweep of the room property…

View Full Summary
Name: Robey v. Superior Court (People)
Case #: B231019
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 6
Opinion Date: 10/24/2011
Subsequent History: 1/18/12 rev. granted (S197735)

The smell of marijuana alone does not justify the warrantless search of a package. Robey consigned a sealed package to FedEx with the use of a false name. Based on the package's odor, FedEx withheld the package from the shipping process and contacted local law enforcement. Officers with training and experience in identifying the odor of marijuana seized and opened the package without obtaining a warrant. When Robey presented the shipping documents to FedEx to determine the location of the package, he was arrested for sale or transportation of marijuana and possession for sale. The denial of a motion to…

View Full Summary