Marijuana Possession Case Dismissed Due To Fourth Amendment Violation

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September, 2013 - Tulsa, Oklahoma

J.S. was charged with possession of marijuana when he was pulled over in Tulsa, Oklahoma for an alleged license plate violation.  The Tulsa Police searched J.S.'s car and person because J.S. gave the police consent to search and confessed to having the marijuana.  

. was charged with possession of marijuana based on his confession and consent to search.  J.S. hired me to defend him on this apparently open and shut case.  I questioned J.S. about the incident and determined that the pull over by the police was unlawful because it lacked probable cause therefore violated J.S.'s Fourth Amendment rights.

I wrote and filed a motion to suppress the marijuana, as "fruit of the poisonous tree", due to the unlawful pullover and stop.  The U.S. Supreme Court coined the term "fruit of the poisonous tree" in Nardone v. United States, 308 U.S. 338, 60 S. Ct. 266, 84 L. Ed. 307 (1939), in the opinion by Justice Felix Frankfurter.  The term "fruit of the poisonous tree" refers to evidence that is discovered by law enforcement due to a constitutional violation.

At the hearing on the motion to suppress, the trial court ruled in favor of J.S. and sustained my motion to suppress.  The marijuana possession charge was dismissed and J.S. went home a happy man!