A. Assuming Officer Jones only had the information set forth in paragraphs #1 through #4 would he have probable cause for a search warrant? Why or why not?
Paragraph #1 through #4 do not provide enough probable cause for a warrant. Paragraph #1 through #4 provide information from the anonymous tip and from the informant. The only other information provided is the background of Officer A. Jones as a law enforcement officer. When reviewing Illinois Vs Gates, and the “Totality of the Circumstances Test”. In order to complete this Test, first you would need to have the information from your tip and from the informant which you have. Second the officer must have knowledge himself or through another government entity in order to complete this Test (Invispress P2). Paragraph #1 through #4 give very good information from the informant and the ...view middle of the document...
The Exclusionary Rule prevents the prosecution from using evidence collected in violation of a defendant’s right (Coernell P1). Additionally any evidence discovered as a result of this evidence becomes known as the Fruits of the Poisonous Tree. This evidence is considered tainted as it was found only because of the initial illegal search. The only way to save any of this evidence is for the prosecution to prove inevitable discovery. In using the inevitable discovery doctrine, probable cause is reduced to a preponderance of the evidence by the court (Bloom P 80-84). In our case this means that if the information provided by the tip and the information from the informant appear to be factual, the evidence will not be suppressed.
C. What, if any, issues do you see regarding the credibility of the informant?
The first issue is the informant has no previous record working with law enforcement. Secondly he is doing this to get a sentence reduced so he has so he has something to gain by finding drugs to be in the residence. Finally he states the Fox can sell him marijuana and that there is marijuana in the house but was unable to purchase any so there is no proof that these statements are true. Even with this, case law has shown where this type of information has stood up in court. In US V Alvarez 899 F2d 833, a phoned in tip from a police informant leads to the stop of Alvarez and arrest on multiple gun and drug charges (Openjurist P2). I still believe that with the lack of evidence produced it will be hard to establish the credibility of the informant and this case would not stand on his testimony alone.
D. Assuming Officer Jones now has the information set forth in paragraphs #1 through #5 below, would he have probable cause for a search warrant? Why or why not?
Yes this information would provide enough probable cause for the search warrant. This case is very close to Illinois vs Gates in how the information is developed.