2013 South Carolina Code of Laws
Title 17 - Criminal Procedures
SECTION 17-13-140. Issuance, execution and return of search warrants for property connected with the commission of crime; inventory of property seized.

SC Code § 17-13-140 (2013) What's This?

Any magistrate or recorder or city judge having the powers of magistrates, or any judge of any court of record of the State having jurisdiction over the area where the property sought is located, may issue a search warrant to search for and seize (1) stolen or embezzled property; (2) property, the possession of which is unlawful; (3) property which is being used or has been used in the commission of a criminal offense or is possessed with the intent to be used as the means for committing a criminal offense or is concealed to prevent a criminal offense from being discovered; (4) property constituting evidence of crime or tending to show that a particular person committed a criminal offense; (5) any narcotic drugs, barbiturates, amphetamines or other drugs restricted to sale, possession, or use on prescription only, which are manufactured, possessed, controlled, sold, prescribed, administered, dispensed or compounded in violation of any of the laws of this State or of the United States. Narcotics, barbiturates or other drugs seized hereunder shall be disposed of as provided by Section 44-53-520.

The property described in this section, or any part thereof, may be seized from any place where such property may be located, or from the person, possession or control of any person who shall be found to have such property in his possession or under his control.

A warrant issued hereunder shall be issued only upon affidavit sworn to before the magistrate, municipal judicial officer, or judge of a court of record establishing the grounds for the warrant. If the magistrate, municipal judge, or other judicial officer abovementioned is satisfied that the grounds for the application exist or that there is probable cause to believe that they exist, he shall issue a warrant identifying the property and naming or describing the person or place to be searched. In the case of a warrant issued by a magistrate or a judge of a court of record, it shall be directed to any peace officer having jurisdiction in the county where issued, including members of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, and shall be returnable to the issuing magistrate. In case of a warrant issued by a judge of a court of record, it shall be returnable to a magistrate having jurisdiction of the area where the property is located or the person to be searched is found. If any warrant is issued by any municipal judicial officer to municipal police officers, the return shall be made to the issuing municipal judicial officer. Any warrant issued shall command the officer to whom it is directed to forthwith search the person or place named for the property specified.

Any warrant issued hereunder shall be executed and return made only within ten days after it is dated. The officer executing the warrant shall make and deliver a signed inventory of any articles seized by virtue of the warrant, which shall be delivered to the judicial officer to whom the return is to be made, and if a copy of the inventory is demanded by the person from whose person or premises the property is taken, a copy of the inventory shall be delivered to him.

This section is not intended to and does not either modify or limit any statute or other law regulating search, seizure, and the issuance and execution of search warrants in circumstances for which special provision is made.

HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 17-271; 1964 (53) 1821; 1966 (54) 2268; 1969 (56) 217.

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