Wednesday, August 13, 2008

LOCAL HEROES: OHIO COURT SAYS COPS CAN'T IGNORE WARRANT REQUIREMENT

Cleveland Metro - A woman's home is her castle, even when teens are drinking in the basement. An appeals court ruled that Bainbridge Township police should not have entered Phyllis Andrews' home without a warrant, even though they saw underage drinking, because no emergency existed.

The 11th Ohio Court of Appeals sent the case back to Geauga County Juvenile Court, which had denied Andrews' request to suppress evidence because the search was invalid. She was found guilty after pleading no contest to contributing to the delinquency of a minor but her seven-day jail sentence was put on hold pending her appeal.

"The underlying premise is that before you go into someone's home you need a warrant," said David Maistros, Andrews' attorney. "There are exceptions, such as chasing someone or if some harm is coming to someone in the house. But in this situation there was no emergency. Clearly they would have been granted a warrant, but they did not feel like taking the time to do it."

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