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State v. Pickle

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 10-24-2012
Case #: A150197
Hadlock, J. for the Court; Schuman, P.J.; and Nakamoto, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A150197.pdf

Criminal Procedure: Opening the trunk of a vehicle for a police officer and holding it open is a manifestation of consent to search the vehicle.

Defendant appealed a conditional no-contest plea on the basis that the trial court erred in denying the Defendant's motion to suppress. A police detective responded to a traffic accident outside of a sports bar. While processing the scene, the officer noticed a very strong odor of marijuana. Defendant showed the officer a very small amount of marijuana. According to the officer, he was not satisfied that Defendant had shown him all of the marijuana so he asked and received consent to search the rest of the car. Defendant opened the back hatch of the vehicle for the officer where there was over 60 pounds of marijuana in several boxes. According to Defendant, he did not offer any explicit consent to search the vehicle. Defendant argued that since he did not give consent, the search was illegal. The State argued that Defendant's actions acted as a voluntary "manifestation of consent." The Court of Appeals ruled that opening the trunk and holding it open, as Defendant did in this case, was nonverbal consent giving officers access to the inside of the vehicle. Affirmed.