Warrant Not Required for Search of Parolee's House
Case: People v. Hudson (Unpublished Opinion)
Issues: Search & seizure; People v. Kazmierczak; Warrant requirement; People v. Frohriep; The “special needs” or regulatory exception; People v. Woods; Effect of probation on the warrant requirement; Griffin v. Wisconsin; Samson v. California; Consent; People v. Marsack; Written consent to search the parolee’s person and/or property pursuant to MCL 791.238(19); Sentencing; Scoring of OVs; People v. Earl;
Summary: The court held that the trial court did not err by denying defendant’s motion to suppress.
He was convicted of possession of less than 25 grams of cocaine and sentenced, as a fourth habitual offender, to 46 to 180 months’ imprisonment. His sentence was enhanced under the repeat controlled substance offender statute. On appeal, the court rejected his argument that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress evidence, which included crack cocaine, marijuana, and two BB guns, on the basis that these items were discovered during a warrantless search that was not permitted under his parole conditions. “The trial court’s finding was based on its credibility determinations, and well-supported by facts in the record.” Thus, “considering the totality of the circumstances,” its finding that defendant “gave consent to search the house was not clearly erroneous.” Further, the “scope of the search permitted by defendant’s parole order included anything in the home or on defendant’s person, regardless of whether the parolee was residing in another person’s home when the search took place.” Moreover, his parole officer “testified that she performed a house call for every new parolee, and had previously explained to [defendant] that the conditions of [his] parole would not only include searches of [his person], but also could include searches of” the house. As such, the search of his person and the house “constituted a lawful exception to the Fourth Amendment requirement ‘that searches be conducted pursuant to warrants and be based on probable cause.’”