Legal Question in Criminal Law in Georgia

Do you have to let cops search your vehicle when you get pulled over in the state of Georgia

Asked on 7/27/13, 1:06 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Robert Gardner Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP

No, you do not have to allow the police to search your car during a traffic stop. If you are arrested, they are allowed to do an inventory search of your vehicle, presumably to make sure that they know what is in the car so that it is still there after you get it out of impound. However, if they are asking for permission, that means they have already decided not to arrest you and they must ask your permission. If you refuse, they may say that they will get a warrant or to stay in the car while they call a drug dog. If they do, they have gone beyond the scope of the stop and anything found can be suppressed in court. The thing to do is refuse. If they say they will get a warrant, ask if you are free to leave. If they say yes, leave in an orderly fashion. If they say you are not free to leave, ask if you are under arrest and what basis they have to hold you there. Be polite and comply with any of their requests so that they don't have a basis to arrest you for disorderly conduct or obstruction, and politely refuse to allow them to search. If they ask you why, say that you are invoking your constitutional rights. If they search it anyway, Just make sure to remember everything to that you can record it or write it down later in case they find something and arrest you. Then hire an attorney asap.

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Answered on 7/29/13, 6:39 am

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