In this archive episode, Dennis expounds on the nuances of searching a vehicle with probable cause after an arrest and a search incident that leads to arrest in a motor vehicle setting. Recorded on 07/19/2018.
State v Eckel 2006 – There is no such thing as search of a vehicle incident to arrest. THIS IS DIFFERENT THAN A VEHICLE THAT HAS PC TO SEARCH. See State of NJ v Witt 2015 below. https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=13373502352381477276&q=eckel&hl=en&as_sdt=4,31
Also see Arizona V. Gant (2009) which replaced NY v. Belton (Belton Bright Line Rule).https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=16930540025490515536&q=arizona+v+gant&hl=en&as_sdt=3,31
State v. William Witt 2015 – Significantly, we also made clear in Alston, supra, that merely because “the particular occupants of the vehicle may have been removed from the car, arrested, or otherwise restricted in their freedom of movement,” police were not required to secure a warrant. 88 N.J. at 234.
Last, relying on Chambers, we emphasized that “when there is probable cause to conduct an immediate search at the scene of the stop, the police are not required to delay the search by seizing and impounding the vehicle pending review of that probable cause determination by a magistrate.” Id. at 234–35. (Translation: You don’t need to call a judge and get a search warrant.)
State of NJ v Irelan 2005 – This case ruled officers have the right to search a motor vehicle for open containers after an arrest for DWI.
(1) the police may lawfully effect a custodial arrest of a motorist when there is probable cause of a DWI violation;
(2) incident to the arrest, the police may search the person of the arrestee; and
(3) a contemporaneous warrantless search of the vehicle is permissible
We hold that these facts are sufficient to support a reasonable well-grounded suspicion that alcohol was consumed in the vehicle, and thus the vehicle contained open containers of alcohol. Therefore, the probable cause prong of the automobile exception is met.
This will be allowed for CDS related DWI’s as well.