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A Better Partnership
September 04, 2013

MSC vacates defendant's win in drug-sniffing dog case in favor of remand on whether police reliance on state precedent was reasonable

The Supreme Court vacated a decision from June which reinstated a trial court opinion finding a Fourth Amendment violation.  After a motion for reconsideration, the Supreme Court instead remanded the drug-sniffing dog case to the Court of Appeals.  The Court of Appeals originally reversed the trial court and found the warrantless use of a drug-sniffing dog at the curtilage of a home to be consistent with the Fourth Amendment, based on a published Court of Appeals opinion.  After an intervening U.S. Supreme Court case on the issue, Florida v. Jardines, 133 S. Ct. 1409 (2013), our Supreme Court reinstated the trial court opinion in lieu of granting leave to appeal.  Now the Supreme Court is giving the Court of Appeals a second pass on the case, instructing it to consider both Jardines and Davis v. United States, 131 S. Ct. 2419 (2011).  Davis permits the government's use of the fruits of a search conducted "in objectively reasonable reliance on binding judicial precedent."  Stay tuned. See our prior blog post on the Supreme Court's June order here.

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