A police officer can not use a probationer’s search condition to retroactively justify a warrantless detention that begins before the officer learns of the condition, the CA Fourth District Court of Appeal held 1/4/07 in People v. Miller, G033762. The officer in Miller stopped a car purely because of the car was in a dark parking lot late at night — in other words, without reasonable suspicion of any criminal activity at all. After talking with the driver, the officer learned about the search condition and conducted a pat search that revealed marijuana and methamphetamine. The remedy for the unjustified stop, the Fourth District said, was reversal.
Miller also referred to People v. Moore, decided by the California Supreme Court on 7/16/2006, and available at 39 Cal.4th 168. In Moore, it was not clear whether the officers knew of the probationer’s search condition when they took evidence from the defendant’s mouth while he was sedated. Therefore, it was necessary to remand for a new suppression hearing.