This week on the Writer's Detective Bureau. Vehicle searches, case law and organizational charts.
I'm Adam Richardson and this is the Writer's Detective Bureau.
Welcome to episode number 44 of the Writer's Detective Bureau, the podcast dedicated to helping authors and screenwriters write professional quality crime related fiction. I'd like to thank gold shield patron Debra Dunbar from debradunbar.com, gold shield patron C.C. Jameson from ccjameson.com, and my two newest gold shield patrons, Larry Keeton and Vicki Tharp of vickitharp.com, for their support.
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Before we get into this week's content, I wanted to give a quick shout out to Amanda Feyerbend, who is not only one of my latest coffee club patrons. She also hit me up on Twitter today. And Amanda tweeted this to her followers, "I've spent the morning reading transcripts from Writer's Detectives podcasts. I print them out because I'm a visual learner and can take notes easier. If you write mysteries, definitely check them out. Lots of great info.
Thank you so much for the Twitter love, Amanda. Amanda is the author of The Pruitt County Mysteries and The Ideal Woman. And anyone that is serious enough to print out the transcripts of these episodes to do her storytelling homework definitely deserves some credit for that. You can find her work at amandafeyerbend.com. And that's F-E-Y-E-R-B-E-N-D. And I will link to Amanda's site in the show notes at writersdetective.com/44.
As a teacher myself, I understand the importance of reaching all learner types. And that's one of the biggest reasons why I use rev.com to create complete transcripts of every episode. As I talked about in episode 43, I also used rev.com to help me dictate portions of my upcoming book. Now, most of us talk faster than we can type. And if you're on a deadline, leveraging on the go time can be priceless. So if you'd like to give rev.com a shot, you can get $10 off your first order by going to writersdetectivebureau.com/rev, and that's R-E-V.
George Carroll and John Kiro were in George's car on a highway similar between Detroit and Grand Rapids, Michigan, when they were pulled over by law enforcement. And the cops searched the car and discovered gin and whiskey hidden within the upholstered seat backs. I should probably mention that this was during 1921, the start of the roaring 20's, but a year into prohibition. The United States nationwide ban on alcohol that lasted until 1933.
So what's this story got to do with modern policing? Well, the automobile was still a relatively new convenience back then. And George Carroll's attorney made the argument that the cops needed a search warrant to search for the alcohol hidden in George's car. The case was Carroll versus United States, or Carroll v. United States. And it was heard by the United States Supreme Court in 1925. The supreme court ruled that there was a necessary difference between the search of a building and the search of a vehicle. And that seeking a search warrant is not practical because the vehicle can be quickly moved out of the locality or jurisdiction in which the warrant must be sought.
But they also went on to recognize that it would be unreasonable for prohibition agents to stop every automobile on the road. Well, I guess I should have mentioned that old George, the whiskey runner, had previously been in negotiations with undercover prohibition agents to sell them some illegal liquor. That transaction never happened, but on the night he was stopped and searched by prohibition agents George was driving the same car and with the same business partner as when the undercover deal was being negotiated.
So in other words, the prohibition agents were able to articulate their probable cause for searching this particular vehicle for illegal alcohol. There've been various cases since 1925 that covered the legal complexities of warrant-less searches of vehicles and when a search warrant is required, like in Gant v. Arizona. But I won't bore you with all of those details because that won't help... Continue reading...
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