Case Study 2: Plain View, Open Fields, Abandonment, and Border Searches as They Relate to Search and Seizures
Officer Williams asked the neighborhood’s regular trash collector to put the content of the defendant’s garbage that was left on the curb in plastic bags and to turn over the bags to him at the end of the day. The trash collector did as the officer asked in order to not mix the garbage once he collected the defendant’s garbage. Then, Officer Williams’ partner, Officer Martinez, searched through the garbage and found items indicative of narcotics use. Officer Williams and Officer Martinez then recited the information that was obtained from the trash in an affidavit in support of a warrant to search the defendant’s home. Officer Martinez and Officer Williams encountered the defendant at the house later that day upon execution of the warrant. The officers found quantities of cocaine and heroin during the search and arrested the defendant on felony narcotics charges.
Write a 2- to 3-page paper in which you:
Identify the constitutional amendment that would govern Officer Williams’ and Officer Martinez’ actions.
Analyze the validity and constitutionality of the officers’ actions.
Assess if the officers’ actions were justified under the doctrines of plain view, abandonment, open fields, or border searches. Support your response by citing specific case law and/or contemporary cases.
Use at least three quality references. Note: Wikipedia and other similar websites do not qualify as academic resources