Can my roommate, name not on the lease, give the police permission to enter my home? 11 Answers as of April 18, 2013

I was out shopping when I received a call from the police stating that I was to immediately come into the police station for questioning. I didn't know it at the time, but an old girlfriend had tipped off the police that I was a marijuana user, and that I kept an amount, never over an one ounce, in the confines of my home, along with other glass pipes, a scale, etc. My roommate answered the door and being as easily overwhelmed as she is, let them in without a search warrant and they in turn found everything. Due to there being a scale, and roughly one ounce of weed, the police want to charge me with Intent to distribute, however, that's not the case at all. I buy one time, in bulk, every 2-3 months, for personal use, due to panic attacks. The scale is for measuring out the amounts to last the proper time. I'm not a medical card holder or legally registered to smoke marijuana. I have one paraphernalia charge and that's it. Can the police legally enter and search my home without my (the owners) consent?

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Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
If the roommate did not have control over the area where the stuff was kept, then he can't allow the search. This question depends on the details.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 4/18/2013
Law Offices of Eric J. Bell | Eric J. Bell
You have some good issues here that may work out for your benefit. You should hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer in your area and fight the case.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 4/17/2013
William L. Welch, III Attorney | William L. Welch, III
Probably not, but he would have to persuade a judge that the police did not have probable cause. An attorney can assist you with evaluating the prosecution's case, any defenses that you might have, and any plea offer that might be made, so that you can decide whether to plea bargain or go to trial. If you were to be found guilty, then an attorney can assist you with presenting mitigation, allocution, and a recommendation for a more lenient sentence. and a recommendation for a more lenient sentence. Consider seeking a confidential consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney. Beware that online posts are not confidential. If somehow the prosecution were to find your post, then it might be used in evidence against you.
Answer Applies to: Maryland
Replied: 4/16/2013
Universal Law Group, Inc. | Francis John Cowhig
Your question requires an attorney consultation. It is not a simple question that can be answered on this type of forum. There are many factors that would need to be considered and evaluated. The short answer is that if she lives there, she has the right to grant consent. The question is whether she can consent to a search of your individual private area of the residence. I strongly suggest that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney for a face-to-face consultation and give him/her all of the facts surrounding your situation. He/she would then be in a better position to analyze your case and advise you of your options.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 4/16/2013
The Law Office of Carlos H. Davalos
The Law Office of Carlos H. Davalos | Carlos H. Davalos
Perhaps, under apparent authority grounds.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 4/16/2013
    Barton Barton & Plotkin
    Barton Barton & Plotkin | Maurice Ross
    Your roommate was lawfully present and, therefore, she had the right to consent to entry by the police into your apartment. It is irrelevant that her name was not on the lease. Police and prosecutors use scales as evidence of dealing, and courts will accept this evidence. Therefore, you need to take this seriously. If this had been your first offense, there would have been a good chance the charges can be reduced to a violation, But the prior paraphernalia charge complicates this. You absolutely must retain criminal defense counsel to defend you failure to do so would be a major mistake. Prosecutors will not listen or care about your story. Your best hope is to convince the judge that you were just a user and not a dealer. You cannot do this on your own-only by retaining criminal defense counsel will you be able to present a viable defense.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 4/16/2013
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    The police can enter a home, where the owner has legally permitted an adult to remain in the house without the owner being present. First, the adult guest had apparent authority to allow the police to come in and search. Second, the police were not following up on a tip from an ex about marijuana use. They are too busy for that type of nonsense.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 4/16/2013
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    Since your roommate lived there, she had the right to "invite" them in to search the home.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 4/16/2013
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Yes, get an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 4/16/2013
    Conway Law Pllc.
    Conway Law Pllc. | B. L. Conway
    That will be a question for the Judge on a Motion to Suppress the evidence.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 4/16/2013
    Hammerschmidt Broughton Law
    Hammerschmidt Broughton Law | Mark A. Broughton
    Yes. She lives there and as far as the cops are concerned, has ostensible authority to give them consent to search.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 4/16/2013
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