Iowa Supreme Court rules that a defendant cannot be sentenced as a habitual offender for felony OWI 3rd offense because the maximum sentence for this offense is set specifically by statute; hence the specific maximum takes precedence over the general habitual offender rule.

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Iowa Supreme Court rules that jury instructions must contain marshalling instructions explaining whether specific intent or general intent applies, and to which crimes.

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Iowa Supreme Court rules that a motion to suppress should have been granted in the case in which the police justified the stop of a vehicle based on the community caretaking function, wherein the police claimed they were doing a safety check on a person who was a passenger whom they believed might be there and who previously might had been in a motor vehicle accident in another vehicle. The requirements of the community caretaking function were not met.

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Iowa Court of Appeals reverses conviction of Defendant accused of Operating While Intoxicated and Driving While Barred, for the State failed to prove with substantial evidence that he was the operator of the vehicle.

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Suppression of evidence is required when a pat-down search exceeds the scope of the consent given. Consent to a pat down does not give the officer authority to reach into pockets, to remove items, and then to open items, unless the criminality of the items are immediately apparent from the mere patting down of the outside of the clothing.

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In interpreting the requirements of Iowa’s version of the 4th Amendment (Article I, section 8), the Iowa Supreme Court sets some new and clear limitations on law enforcement’s ability to impound and inventory search vehicles, i.e. search them without a warrant. Bottom line is that in many more cases, the police will require a warrant to search vehicles and their contents.
 

In Carpenter vs. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the police/government must obtain a search warrant prior to obtaining cell phone or cell-site records.

 

 

Iowa Supreme Court holds that freezing a Defendant’s assets prior to trial is improper.

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Insufficient evidence of identification when the only evidence placing Defendant at scene was video that does not show his face or sufficiently distinct identifying features for an accurate identification. Simply because an officer believed he saw the Defendant in the neighborhood shortly before the burglary and believed the Defendant was the one in the video was not enough. The video did not sufficiently support such assertions.

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Client facing three drug felonies, two serious misdemeanor drug charges, and a simple misdemeanor – five charges in all – pleads to a single count of aggravated misdemeanor prohibited acts for a deferred judgment.