GI Court Splits

on K-9 Corps

A general search of an army barracks by dope-detecting dogs turned up marijuana in a certain soldier's locker. His conviction was later reversed on grounds of an improperly issued warrant.. In considering; this case, however, the three-judge U.S. Couit of Military Appeals gave three conflicting opinions on canine searches in the aimed forces.

Judge Cook reasoned that a general inspection in which the canine narcs sniff only in public areas is not really a search and that the Fourth Amendment guarantees against invasion of privacy do not, therefore, apply. Judge Ferguson held the opposite view. Chief Judge Fletcher, who wrote the lead opinion, declared that base commanders have the right to conduct such inspections to rind out if drugs are being used. Fletcher maintained, however, that the potential for abuse of this power is so great that any drugs discovered may not be used as trial evidence or as the basis for a search warrant..

Continue reading here: No Warrant Required for Toilet Search

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