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MushyBubbler

join:2004-01-23
Portland, OR

Police "Wellness checks" - what's legal?

Recently my friend's apartment underwent a police "wellness check" because the screen to his window had fallen off while he was not home & someone must have called them. Well anyways the cops went in & saw a bong & a small amount of Marijuana & confiscated it. They left a note saying what happened & what they confiscated.

Yes, I understand drugs & drug paraphernalia are illegal. However, they entered his residence without a warrant & without consent & felt the need to confiscate these items.

Think this is legal? & does my friend have any sort of legal recourse? Obviously he's not going to get his weed & bong back, but I think he might have a case for invasion of privacy? Just want to see some opinions! Thanks.


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11

2 edits

2 recommendations

They had reason to go into the apartment thinking it may have been burglarized.
He just needs to be happy they didn't come back and arrest him for possession of drugs.
Leave well enough alone!
He starts some shit with them they can make his life a living hell!

If the cops entered his apartment and found someone robbing the place they be his heros, but instead they took illegal drugs and didn't arrest him he wants to try to fuck them over?
Weird friend you have!


johnny_t
Premium
join:2004-03-21
Palo Alto, CA
& I bet his bong & stash was on the coffee table


dvd536
as Mr. Pink as they come
Premium
join:2001-04-27
Phoenix, AZ
kudos:4
reply to MushyBubbler
said by MushyBubbler:

Recently my friend's apartment underwent a police "wellness check" because the screen to his window had fallen off while he was not home & someone must have called them. Well anyways the cops went in & saw a bong & a small amount of Marijuana & confiscated it. They left a note saying what happened & what they confiscated.

Yes, I understand drugs & drug paraphernalia are illegal. However, they entered his residence without a warrant & without consent & felt the need to confiscate these items.

Think this is legal? & does my friend have any sort of legal recourse? Obviously he's not going to get his weed & bong back, but I think he might have a case for invasion of privacy? Just want to see some opinions! Thanks.
if he's smart, he'll just let it go.
if he's an idiot, he'll call the cops asking about his marijuana and smoking pipe.
does oregon have med marijuana?
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dipweed23

join:2009-07-21
Ypsilanti, MI

1 edit
reply to MushyBubbler
It all depends on how they got in there...

If the apartment management called them and they found the door locked, and the manager opened it for them (or management agreed with the police that it should be checked out and let them in), sadly there is nothing he can do, as the entry was completely legal.

If they broke the door down, that COULD be a different story. If he really wants to press the issue he should contact a good lawyer, NOT the police. If there is any contact to be made, the lawyer will do the leg work, not the client.

Busted window and smoke coming from the home = good idea to check if every one is okay. A broken insect screen with a flimsy aluminum frame, seems to be just a reason to enter a home they had their eye on for a while. Being that they did find drugs there, he is now a target. Better clean up his act, stop the come and go traffic, and really consider quitting that habit. It's already expensive, and if they seriously bust him with any on him in a perfectly legal manor could get even more expensive in a hurry.


fruhead

join:2002-01-29
Mosquito,NJ
reply to The Pig
said by The Pig:

They had reason to go into the apartment thinking it may have been burglarized.
He just needs to be happy they didn't come back and arrest him for possession of drugs.
Leave well enough alone!
He starts some shit with them they can make his life a living hell!

If the cops entered his apartment and found someone robbing the place they be his heros, but instead they took illegal drugs and didn't arrest him he wants to try to fuck them over?
Weird friend you have!
I don't see any place where the friend is trying to 'fuck them over' - he's concerned with his rights, and with justification.

To the OP: My understanding is that (depending on the jurisdiction) law enforcement can enter a private residence under these circumstances, but they cannot remove anything on their own. The police can't go waltzing into the station holding a bong and sack-o-dope and not fill out a report on how and where they came into possession of it. That brings the resident's name and address into the picture.

Besides, is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

Again, I'm not familiar with Oregon or Portland laws, but this just sounds unreasonable. A reasonable expectation of privacy, illegal search and seizure, possibly petty theft. The police don't know the reason for the paraphenalia being in the residence - they just can't arbitrarily decide to remove something because in most circumstances it would be illegal.

Look at it this way:
If LEO entered a house, found a bunch of children's toys and a stack of 'Chicks with D*cks' magazines all in the same pile, they could assume that children could view these magazines freely, thus giving them (in their mind) justification for their removal. What if the owner of the house was single, no children, but employed as a toy designer and the toys in question were there for that reason? No children involved, no question of 'under 18' viewing of such salacious material - LEO can't arbitrarily make that decision.

American Justice demands innocence until proven guilty, and a reasonable expectation of privacy within your own lawfully-occupied dwelling. Just taking it upon yourself to 'clean up' isn't in the equation. It's a great and noble notion, but it's not The Law.


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11
said by fruhead:

[is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

It's not so much the bong, as it is the reside in it! I never seen a smoker that cleaned the bowl after using one!


The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11

1 edit
reply to MushyBubbler
Press charges against a cop and you might as well leave the state.
Maybe the landlord that openned the door for them took the weed and bong!


Gbcue
Premium
join:2001-09-30
Santa Rosa, CA
kudos:8

1 recommendation

Since they looked through the window, under the "plain sight" laws, they can confiscate it.

My suggestion: get some curtains.
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beck
Premium,MVM
join:2002-01-29
On The Road
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to MushyBubbler
My suggestion is to tell the friend to put his stash away. Geez.


Grail Knight

Premium
join:2003-05-31
Valhalla
kudos:6
reply to MushyBubbler
Let sleeping dogs lie.

Also tell your buddy to stash his stash.


Kilroy
Premium,MVM
join:2002-11-21
Saint Paul, MN
reply to MushyBubbler
Apartment = No rights. You don't own it, the complex can let them in, for almost any reason.

Pushing the issue could lead to jail time and or fines. I say write off your loss and probably play it cool for a bit.
--
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neochu

join:2008-12-12
Windsor, ON
reply to MushyBubbler

illegal material is illegal material regardless of wither or not it was in a private house or not.

If such material was illegal and the police found it they can confiscate it regardless of its location and/or proceed with a fine or charges. This would include counter fit goods or other things like pirated media.

With things like drugs and depending on possession laws and the specific items charges are nearly guaranteed.

I'm thinking that charges where not layed because of the type of entry the police had made (a "wellness check" not a "warranted search" which may be part of building/maitnenance codes or apartment rules) any evidence would have been (arguably) inadmissible in court so charging would have been a waste of time. Hence the warning letter (most likely telling him to clean up).

This is just an opinion of course and if your friend is worried he needs to contact a proper authority and let sleeping dogs lie. If he does pursue it than he will be giving the police just cause for a warrant and proper search.


ptrowski
Got Helix?
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join:2005-03-14
Putnam, CT
kudos:4

1 recommendation

reply to MushyBubbler
He should consider himself lucky. Let it go.
Reminds me of the idiots that call the cops after someone stole their drugs.


motoracer

join:2003-09-15
united state

1 edit
reply to MushyBubbler


Mashiki
Balking The Enemy's Plans

join:2002-02-04
Woodstock, ON
kudos:1
Reviews:
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reply to MushyBubbler
said by MushyBubbler:

Think this is legal? & does my friend have any sort of legal recourse? Obviously he's not going to get his weed & bong back, but I think he might have a case for invasion of privacy? Just want to see some opinions! Thanks.
This pretty much applies everywhere in north america. It's legal. Around here they're called welfare checks, but really the same thing. They require, the reasonable grounds that someone is in need of help due to a person having serious bodily harm/death and are unable to respond.

Reasonable grounds by call of a neighbor that there is something suspicious(in this case the screen being off), no answer from someone attempting to get in contact with the occupant by an individual, belief in harm/etc. That there is something wrong, it also requires in most cases a higher ranked officer to show up and preform the check or give a verbal OK by radio.

Chances of an invasion of privacy case? Next to zero. Welfare checks, there's an assload of case law on it. Both in the US and Canada protecting cops on doing them. I suppose your friend should be grateful that they have neighbors who are willing to watch out for him in case something bad happens. Rather then some other places where no one cares, and he could have been bleeding to death and no one showing up when they needed it the most.

IMO Drop it. Or goto court, and watch the shit hit the fan.

slckusr
Premium
join:2003-03-17
Greenville, SC
kudos:1
reply to MushyBubbler
lol.

Dont bother its not worth it. As long as the current marijuana laws are in place the marijuana user is breaking the law.


Cheese
Premium
join:2003-10-26
Naples, FL
kudos:1
reply to MushyBubbler
A lesson learned, do not leave your weed and bong sitting out in plain view. Stupid IDEA!

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to MushyBubbler
Since no one has mentioned this yet I will. Your friend should be more concerned about the possibility of being evicted. The Landlord would definitely have grounds.

Lesson to be learned -- do not leave items which are not legal to possess in plain site, even in your own home.


Cheese
Premium
join:2003-10-26
Naples, FL
kudos:1
reply to The Pig
said by The Pig:

said by fruhead:

[is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

It's not so much the bong, as it is the reside in it! I never seen a smoker that cleaned the bowl after using one!
You mean residue?

dentman42
Premium
join:2001-10-02
Columbus, OH

1 recommendation

said by Cheese:

said by The Pig:

said by fruhead:

[is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

It's not so much the bong, as it is the reside in it! I never seen a smoker that cleaned the bowl after using one!
You mean residue?
Nah, I think he's referring to the old Steve Martin "Let's Get Small" bit... :P


Camaro
Question everything
Premium
join:2008-04-05
Westfield, MA
kudos:1
reply to Gbcue
correct plain sight,also if your window is open and they smell the wacky weed that is probable cause and they don't need a warrant to search everything.


fatalz
Premium
join:2003-05-11
Fayetteville, NC
said by Camaro:

correct plain sight,also if your window is open and they smell the wacky weed that is probable cause and they don't need a warrant to search everything.
Incorrect in North Carolina. Even with probable cause officers would need to obtain a search warrant, however they would do what is called "seize and freeze" where the house and everyone in it is on lockdown till the warrant is done and signed by a judge / magistrate.


Camaro
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well you are lucky in your state,in my state by the time it gets to court the police have lied so much a warrant doesn't mean shit,trust me i have been through our great system of law when i was younger and unless you have a Johnnie Cochran like lawyer warrant's don't mean crap.



N10Cities
Premium
join:2002-05-07
Fort Smith, AR
Reviews:
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reply to The Pig
said by The Pig:

said by fruhead:

[is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

It's not so much the bong, as it is the reside in it! I never seen a smoker that cleaned the bowl after using one!
Both are illegal in Arkansas. Categorized as 'drug paraphenalia'. Funny thing is you can still buy cigarette papers at your local convenience store.


fruhead

join:2002-01-29
Mosquito,NJ

1 recommendation

reply to Cheese
said by Cheese:

said by The Pig:

said by fruhead:

[is possession of a bong now illegal in Oregon? If so, times sure have changed. When are they coming after rolling papers?

It's not so much the bong, as it is the reside in it! I never seen a smoker that cleaned the bowl after using one!
You mean residue?
I dunno - I used to reside in one when I was younger. Much younger. Then again, I remember the $20 oz.

Vaguely.


Cheese
Premium
join:2003-10-26
Naples, FL
kudos:1
said by fruhead:

I dunno - I used to reside in one when I was younger. Much younger. Then again, I remember the $20 oz.

Vaguely.

mogooder

join:2002-11-26
Washougal, WA
reply to fruhead
fruhead

Your a youngster, 3 finger lid, 10 bucks, was the norm, back in the day. LMAO
And it was:
mogooder
--
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The Pig
I know you want to be me
Premium
join:2009-09-11

1 edit
East coast it was called Ounces
West Coast it was called Lids

Ounces where $5 when I started back in 1965


Ray422
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join:2002-03-04
Lost
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reply to MushyBubbler
said by MushyBubbler:

Think this is legal? & does my friend have any sort of legal recourse?
Silly wabbit, how do you think the cops get all their personal use freebies

Your friend doesn't own that apartment, he rents it. The landlord probably allowed the search. Anyway, remember the flimsy excuse for searching OJ's home? Their goofy excuses are always finally ruled; how many times have you heard "acted within proper police procedure".

If he pursues this, he may not get charged for drug possession, but he'll sure spend a ton-a-money. Meaning that they always "gotcha", because the constitution don't matter anymore. Don't mess with the Gestapo
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