State v. McMurrayAnnotate this Case
Law enforcement officers searched Defendant’s home pursuant to a search warrant and found plastic bags containing methamphetamine. The search warrant was based on information police received from a warrantless search of Defendant’s garbage. Defendant was charged with third-degree possession of a controlled substance. Defendant moved to suppress the evidence, arguing that the warrantless search of his garbage violated Minn. Const. art. I, 10. The district court denied the motion to suppress. The court of appeals affirmed. At issue before the Supreme Court was whether Article I, Section 10 of the Minnesota Constitution requires greater protection than the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution in the context of a warrantless search of garbage set out for collection in an area accessible to the public. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) there is not a principled basis for interpreting Article I, Section 10 to require greater protection that the Fourth Amendment; (2) it was lawful for the police to obtain Defendant’s garbage from the garbage collector; and (3) because the warrantless search of Defendant’s garbage was reasonable under the state and federal constitutions, the search warrant for Defendant’s residence based on evidence found in the garbage was valid.