How should the judge rule on this motion?
For this hypothetical fact pattern, refer back to US v. Walther, in particular, the rule from that case, and apply the rule to these facts to come to a conclusion. It will be helpful to compare these facts to the facts of Walther.
Jacob is a janitor/handyman in a small apartment complex where Peter lives. Police suspect that Peter is dealing drugs, but they have no probable cause for a warrant. One night, while they’re watching the apartment, the officers notice Jacob enter apartments using his master key so he can do minor repairs. They approach Jacob and ask if he’s ever seen drugs or paraphernalia in Peter’s apartment. Jacob says he hasn’t. The officers thank him for his time and tell him that if he ever sees anything illegal, he should call the police.
The next day, while Peter is at work, Jacob enters the apartment and searches through the closets. He finds a shoebox full of cash and a suitcase that contains bricks of cocaine wrapped in plastic. He takes everything to the police. Based on this evidence, police arrest Peter for drug trafficking. Peter moves to suppress the evidence Jacob uncovered, arguing that it was an illegal search.
How should the judge rule on this motion? Why?
For this assignment, you do not need to discuss the Exclusionary Rule as we won’t study that for several weeks. Instead, focus on the Fourth Amendment, the definition of a search, and whether the Fourth Amendment applies to this situation. Apply the rule from US v. Walther to reach your conclusion. Format your answer using the IRAC method (Issue, Rule, Application, Conclusion). Have fun 🙂
Identify the legal issues raised by the hypothetical.
Explain what law applies to the resolution of the legal issues.
Apply the rule of the law to the legal issue and show evidence of the analytical process through the explanation of the resolution of the issues.
This criterion is linked to a Learning Outcome Conclusion
Answer the legal question raised in the issue section and concisely state the conclusion.