St. Lucie County deputies went to Armando Ring’s (not his real name) house on 4/5/18 to execute a misdemeanor arrest warrant for failure to appear. The deputies did not have a search warrant.
As shown in the picture, Ring’s house was fenced, gated and posted against trespassers. The deputies disregarded the gate, fence and no trespassing sign to go knock on Ring’s door about midnight. The deputies announced who they were, but not their purpose. Deputies pushed the door open, as soon as Ring cracked it, and placed him under arrest. Incident to the arrest, the deputies found cannabis in his pocket.
Ring retained Indian River County drug arrest attorney Jeffrey Garland, who swiftly filed a motion to suppress, asserting that the police entry into Ring’s curtilage, without a search warrant, and without exigent circumstances, violated the Fourth Amendment based on Collins v. Virginia, 584 U.S (2018), and a violation of the knock and announce requirement of Fla. Stat. 901.19. After an extensive evidentiary hearing, Judge Kathryn Nelson orally granted the motion. The State dropped all charges on 9/13/18.
However modest, a home is like a castle, the threshold of which the kings men may not cross without proper authority and after announcing that authority and purpose.