Car search question

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by demonic, May 26, 2010.

  1. demonic

    demonic Sr. Member

    I live in Florida. Now let's say I get pulled over, and a cop has probable cause to search my car... If he happens to find a locked safe, am I required by law to open the safe?
  2. BartSimpson

    BartSimpson Sr. Member

    No, but they can use another method to open the safe that will likely be very destructive to the safe. If the LEO has probable cause to believe the safe contains illegal items or fruits of a crime, they are not going to just let it go on down the road. A drug dog alerting on the safe, for example, is going to be probable cause.

    If you think you have found a loop-hole to avoid search . . . you haven't.
  3. ImMikeW

    ImMikeW New Member

    I actually ran into a situation like this a couple days ago. Cop pulls me over for speeding, smells marijuana, searches my car, and finds nothing except a safe i have in my trunk. He asks me to open it, I say I dont have the key, then he just haves me talk to the other officer and continues to search my car, but he never opened the safe.

    Now although I did actually have the key, and there wasnt anything in the safe at the time, I though he wasn't allowed to force it open unless he found something else in the car. Am I wrong here?
  4. Bud Is good

    Bud Is good Resident non smoker

    They have to have your permission to search your vehicle.. They have to have a warrant to search the locked trunk, (unless it's a hatchback)..They also need a warrant to open the safe they found in your trunk, and also if the glove box is locked they need a warrant for that too..Probable cause only goes so far without consent to search from the owner, or a warrant..They do have the right to call a k-9, but if the dog doesn't freak out, you'll be good to go..
  5. demonic

    demonic Sr. Member

    I thought if K9's were not already at the scene that they cannot call them if its going to require for me to wait more time than a routine traffic stop?
  6. co0lk1ll

    co0lk1ll New Member


    In florida you only have to wait 30 minutes for the dog, at that point you simply inform the officer that it's past the waiting time and that you'll be leaving now.
  7. Buzzby

    Buzzby Buddhist Curmudgeon

    You are wrong. If there is a legitimate reason to search your vehicle, then everything in that vehicle is subject to being searched. There are several exceptions to the requirement to have a search warrant. If a drug dog alerts on your vehicle, that's enough.

    You are wrong on all counts. Where do you get your information? You should be careful. Someone might take what you say seriously and get in a lot of trouble.
    2 people like this.
  8. demonic

    demonic Sr. Member

    Damn well if that's true that sucks because there are K9 units posted everywhere within 15 minutes of anywhere in my city.
  9. S&MPenguin

    S&MPenguin New Member

    That's correct in the police can only detain you for the length of time it takes to check your license and vehicle status and give you a traffic citation but if the officer has reasonable suspicion of criminal activity he can detain you longer to investigate (terry stop).

    While Terry Stops must be brief as far I know there is no set time limit for how long you can be detained, if I'm wrong please cite the appropriate statue or court opinion. As far I know it's up to the individual courts to determine if the stop and the length of detention is unreasonable. While a detention of several hours would constitute a de facto arrest in the eyes of the court, a period of 30 min. likely wouldn't as long as the detaining officer "diligently pursued a means of investigation that was likely to confirm or dispel their suspicions quickly, during which time it was necessary to detain the defendant." (U.S v. Sharpe).
    2 people like this.
  10. Raizor *3GS*

    Raizor *3GS* Sr. Member

    Depends on your state laws.

    In Arizona. Officers now have to have a warrant to search your car, or you have to be already detained for them to search your car. But they also changed to it where actually sitting in the back of a cop car, is no longer being detained. You have to be on your way to jail already, or be in jail already for them to search your car without a warrant.

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