Episode 190

Published on:

12th Sep 2021

Searching Containers in Motor Vehicles After DWI Arrest

In this archive episode, Dennis answers some questions about containers in motor vehicles to be searched after a DWI arrest. Recorded on 11/06/2017.

State of NJ v. Irelan 2005 - This case ruled officers have the right to search a motor vehicle for open containers after an arrest for DWI.

(1) the police may lawfully effect a custodial arrest of a motorist when there is probable cause of a DWI violation;

(2) incident to the arrest, the police may search the person of the arrestee; and

(3) a contemporaneous warrantless search of the vehicle is permissible

We hold that these facts are sufficient to support a reasonable well-grounded suspicion that alcohol was consumed in the vehicle, and thus the vehicle contained open containers of alcohol. Therefore, the probable cause prong of the automobile exception is met.

This will be allowed for CDS related DWI’s as well.


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Street Cop Podcast
The official Street Cop Training Podcast. The Training That Cops Deserve.
The Street Cop Podcast with Dennis Benigno, the founder, and CEO of Street Cop Training.

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Dennis Benigno