Earlier this month, a circuit court in Virginia was faced with the decision of whether to grant a defendant’s appeal in a case involving marijuana and firearm possession. In his appeal, the defendant argued that because of his constitutional right to privacy, the court should have suppressed incriminating evidence that officers found when searching his home. The higher court reviewed the facts of the case and ultimately denied the defendant’s appeal, upholding the original guilty verdict.
Facts of the Case
According to the opinion, two officers came to the defendant’s apartment one afternoon because a neighbor had called 911, reporting disorderly conduct. As soon as the officers stepped out of their car, they smelled marijuana, and they approached the defendant’s door to investigate the odor as well as the possible disorderly conduct.
When the defendant answered the door, he told the officers they could not come in without a search warrant. The officers told the defendant that he had two options: he could let them inside, or he could wait on the porch in handcuffs while they went to get a proper warrant. The defendant conceded that he had been smoking marijuana, and the officers immediately entered the apartment.