A cop stops you for some piddling offense. He resolves that and wonders, "Now, you don't mind if I
You nod "okay" because Officer Friendly, what with his big pistol and creaky leather, club, Mace, and all can look pretty intimidating. And he seems nice enough. He asked nicely and called you "sir," didn't he?
Then he found that pinch of pot you must have forgotten to take out of the pickup. You're busted, cuffed, and in for a ride to town because you didn't say, "No thanks, Officer." After you think about it in the tank for a while you realize you were flim-flammed and decide to take it all the way to the the state supreme court. You did, and
Justices in a 5-1 decision stopped just short of instituting new rules for Iowa law enforcement agents but strongly signaled their view that traffic stops on the side of public highways are “inherently coercive” and therefore can give rise to improper pressure on motorists to agree to vehicle searches.
They ruled the search illegal and the "evidence" therefore inadmissible. They said:
Iowa police officers would do well – but are not yet required – to warn motorists that they don’t have to let authorities search their vehicles during minor traffic stops, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled this morning.
The dissenting justice said:
(a) He didn't want to handicap the police. (He's apparently fine with handicapping the Constitution and the citizens whom it was created to protect -- from the police, among others).
(b) His view is closer to the federal government's opinion. (Good God, man, you consider that a virtue?)
Note to the motorist involved here: Glad you won it. Now get off the pot. Stoners tend to screw up their lives at a higher rate than folks who can handle reality.