State v. WrightAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Court conditionally affirmed Defendant's convictions and remanded for the district court to hold a hearing on Defendant's motion to suppress evidence, holding that the peace officer in this case conducted an unreasonable search and seizure by taking a citizen's opaque trash bags left outside for collection, opening the trash bags, and rummaging through the papers and effects contained therein.
Despite an ordinance making it unlawful for any person to take solid waste placed out for collection, Officer Brandon Heinz, without probable cause or warrant, took Defendant's garbage bags and searched through them during the dark of night. Heinz subsequently applied for and was granted a search warrant based on the evidence obtained from the warrantless seizure and search of Defendant's trash bags. Defendant was subsequently charged with several drug-related counts. The district court denied Defendant's motion to suppress, and Defendant was found guilty. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court held that Heinz conducted an unreasonable search and seizure in violation of Iowa Const. art. I, 8 and that remand was required for a suppression hearing without consideration of the evidence obtained during the trash pulls used to support the warrant application.