Skinrood conducted his search without a warrant, and warrantless searches are presumptively
State v. Galazin
, 58 S.W.3d 500, 505 (Mo. banc 2001).
To satisfy the Fourth
Amendment, the state must establish that the search fit within one of the exceptions to the
probable cause and warrant requirements.
Among these exceptions are investigatory
Terry v. Ohio
, 392 U.S. 1, 88 S.Ct. 1868, 20 L.Ed.2d 889 (1968), and seizure of items
in plain view,
Coolidge v. New Hampshire
, 403 U.S. 443, 91 S.Ct. 2022, 29 L.Ed.2d 564 (1971).
The state asserts that Skinrood's warrantless search was justified, because, when he first saw the
plastic bag, it was in plain sight; hence, the “plain view doctrine” applied. In certain situations,
police may seize, without a warrant, evidence that is in plain view. In
Horton v. California
U.S. 128, 136-37, 110 S.Ct. 2301, 110 L.Ed.2d 112 (1990), the United States Supreme Court has
ruled that, for the state to justify its search under the plain view doctrine, it must prove that three
conditions have been satisfied: (1) that police “did not violate the Fourth Amendment in arriving
at the place from which the evidence could be plainly viewed,” id. at 136, 110 S.Ct. 2301; (2)
that the searching officer had a lawful right of access to the evidence itself, id. at 137, 110 S.Ct.
2301; and (3) that the incriminating character of the evidence seized was immediately apparent,
id. at 136, 110 S.Ct. 2301.
Also, a search warrant is not required for a valid search when owner authorizes it. While a