A Review of Recent Appellate Opinions
Perez v. State
43 Fla. L. Weekly D2404f
Second DCA; October 26, 2018
One day, a young lady, living with her mother and step-father, discovered that one of the channels on the television in the living room displayed a live video feed from her bedroom. She reported the matter to her mother who then searched her husband’s laptop, and discovered several videos of her daughter in various stages of nudity. The mother called the police, and gave them permission to search the laptop. The police called an assistant state attorney and asked him it they may search the laptop with the wife’s consent, or whether they should get a warrant. The Assistant State Attorney told them that they could search the laptop with the wife’s consent. The police searched the laptop, seized the videos, and charged the stepfather with video voyeurism. Did the trial court err in deny the stepfather’s motion to suppress the videos.
The answer is :
Yes. A warrant was necessary because the wife had no authority to consent to the search of personal property that did not belong to her. A wife has not authority to consent to the search of her husband’s personal property, unless there is evidence of both common authority over and mutual usage of the property. The inevitable discovery doctrine was not applicable because the police were not in active pursuit of a warrant prior to the warrantless search of the laptop.
Attorney Samuel A. Walker is a partner at CPLS, P.A., and focuses his practice on civil and criminal appeals. If you are unhappy with the judge’s decision in your case, contact Attorney Walker today at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss an appeal.