Re: Vehicle Searches
Joe Gibbs' Left Kidney
Date: October 23, 2007 03:03AM
My personal experience is that the canine units can be on site in minutes. Other experience dictates that certain officers will "say the right things" to give themselves cause to search you. The Supreme Court has been ambiguous on car searches, at best. For the most part, the police will not bother if you say no and keep saying no. However, if they say you have bloodshot eyes or that they smell some illegal substance, you should relax, remain passively resistant to the search, and just allow them to screw up.
Just because the dog alerted, does not mean the search was legal. Plenty of dog-alerted searches have been thrown out in court. Probable cause is what it is. The dogs can, as another person said, be trained to 'alert' on just about any specific gesture by the officer in charge.
Always hire a lawyer in cases where a search was performed against your consent, if it goes to court.
And, never consent to a search, ever. This isn't Moscow, 1985. We have rights and shouldn't allow them to be trampled. Additionally, as I have found out, you may have forgotten about something, a passenger may have left something behind on a previous ride or dropped something during the current one, or you may have some item in your possession you didn't even know was illegal. The number of objects it is illegal to possess is outlandish in Virginia.