State v. DemontineyAnnotate this Case
Defendant was arrested after law enforcement officers responded to a report that Defendant had stolen a purse and, after conducting a warrant check, learned that Defendant had an outstanding city warrant. At the detention center, officers conducted an inventory search of Defendant’s purse and found drugs and drug paraphernalia. The State charged Defendant with criminal possession of dangerous drugs with intent to distribute and criminal possession of drug paraphernalia. Defendant filed a motion to suppress or dismiss, which the district court denied. Defendant pleaded guilty to both counts. Defendant subsequently appealed the denial of her motion to suppress and dismiss, asking the Supreme Court to overturn State v. Pastos, in which the Court held that a compelling state interest justifies a routine, administrative inventory search of the personal property in the possession of the arrestee at the station house following a lawful arrest. The Supreme Court affirmed the denial of Defendant’s motion and, in so doing, reaffirmed its decision in Pastos, holding (1) safety concerns and procedural safeguards justify the inventory searches at issue; and (2) the search of Defendant’s purse was a valid inventory search under Pastos.