Smell of drugs justified search, court rules




  • In US
  • 2022-10-05 06:49:00Z
  • By The High Point Enterprise, N.C.

Oct. 5-HIGH POINT - Guilford County Sheriff's Office investigators did not need to get a warrant before searching a High Point man's SUV because a detective smelled through an open window of the SUV what he thought was heroin and then saw what looked like heroin, the N.C. Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.

An attorney for Kyle Earl Parker, 37, had tried to get the heroin thrown out of court before trial in 2020, but after a judge refused, Parker pleaded guilty in January 2021 to two counts of attempting to traffic by possession of 28 or more grams of heroin, and one count each of possession of a firearm by a felon, conspiracy to possess heroin, and malicious conduct by a prisoner. The terms of his plea allowed him to file an appeal.

According to the account in the appeals court's opinion, the sheriff's office was investigating Parker and others in May 2019 who were suspected of selling heroin, and a confidential informant arranged to meet a woman involved at a hotel to get a sample of the drugs. The woman and the informant then got into a black 2019 Chevrolet Tahoe registered to Parker.

The informant later arranged to buy 2 kilograms of heroin, and when the delivery was supposed to be made, a detective saw Parker and the black Tahoe arrive nearby.

Officers moved in to detain Parker, and the detective walked around the Tahoe. Through an open window he smelled vinegar, which is what heroin smells like, and looked inside to see an open cereal box on a front seat containing what appeared to be a package of heroin.

In a search of the Tahoe, investigators found a little more than 2 kilograms of heroin, a loaded gun, cellphones and paperwork with Parker's name on it, according to the appellate court's account.

Parker's attorney argued in the trial court and in the appeal that the search was illegal because investigators did not have a warrant, but the trial court ruled - and the appellate court agreed - that because the Tahoe was in a public area, the vinegar smell and sighting of what appeared to the detective to be heroin were adequate probable cause for the search.

The decision upholds Parker's sentence of 10 to 14 years in prison.

COMMENTS

More Related News

FedEx driver told investigators 7-year-old girl was still alive after he hit her with van, documents say
FedEx driver told investigators 7-year-old girl was still alive after he hit her with van, documents say
  • US
  • 2022-12-09 05:25:43Z

The FedEx driver accused of killing a 7-year-old girl in Texas allegedly told investigators she had been fine after he hit her with his truck, but panicked.

Delivery driver confessed to strangling Texas girl, warrant says
Delivery driver confessed to strangling Texas girl, warrant says
  • US
  • 2022-12-09 03:42:10Z

The suspect told detectives he killed the girl because "she was going to tell her father about being hit by the FedEx truck," the warrant states.

How "Boy in the Box" mystery will help solve other cases
How "Boy in the Box" mystery will help solve other cases

Forensic genetic genealogy helped Philadelphia police break new ground in the decades-old "Boy in the Box" mystery on Thursday, identifying the unknown child...

KY juvenile justice worker quits after police discover text messages with girl in custody
KY juvenile justice worker quits after police discover text messages with girl in custody
  • US
  • 2022-12-08 16:53:10Z

Investigators say he asked the girl for passwords to her social media accounts "so he could help her sell photographs and video of a sexual nature."

Increased reward temporarily offered for information on embalmed head found in Economy
Increased reward temporarily offered for information on embalmed head found in Economy
  • US
  • 2022-12-08 10:40:11Z

Detectives are offering a large reward for information that will allow them to find some answers.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: US