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Another question from the drunk chefs I work with

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by basscooker, Sep 8, 2013.

  1. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, Chopshopamps.com
    So as happens, my co-workers and I stumped ourselves on a topic while drinking, and I seek answers from TBOT, well cuz right or wrong, the replies are always entertaining.

    I could simply do the research myself, but figured it would make a fun thread (like the "American History Question" one I posted last week) and besides the answer doesn't really matter, we just wondered, and couldn't seem to figure out if this would fall under the 4th amendment or not.

    Let's say you are crossing the street, and have some pot in your pocket. A K9 unit just happens to be in the first spot at the red light, and you're walking in front of it. If the dog "alerts" to your presence, is that probable cause for the officer to stop you, or search you?

    This probably varies quite widely by state, but let's add the detail that you are in a "zero tolerance" state when this happens.

    What says TBOT?
  2. Tony Flow MMMM

    Tony Flow MMMM

    Dec 4, 2012
    I'd say uh yeah definitely, and is this a serious question.
  3. Busted.
  4. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I would say yes. Now, whether or not the officer feels as though it is important enough to get out and talk to you about it is another. But if the dog alerts the officer, and the officer follows up on it, I would say that any judge would uphold that as probable cause.
  5. Unrepresented

    Unrepresented Something Borderline Offensive

    Jul 1, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Not a lawyer, but sounds like probable cause in a public setting, so that's two strikes against you right there.

    Dogs can't sniff your front door without a warrant, but that's private property v. public.
  6. megafiddle


    May 25, 2011
    Yes, they're completely within their rights to search you.

    That's why I always carry around a squirrel with a Snausage tied on to it's back.
    Whenever that happens, I just release the squirrel and the dog is gone.

    I still get arrested for something or other, but it doesn't have the stigma of a drug charge.

  7. chicago_mike


    Oct 9, 2007
    Chicago - LA - Rome
    Endorsing Artist : Genz Benz
    Yes. You're on public property. As far as home...not much of a difference. They can search you on your property.

    Most the time they don't go doing that, but they more or less can. If they want to arrest you, most the time they'll knock on your door, ask you to come out, and arrest you outside. Seen it, experienced it too. If you start asking all kinds of questions and don't come out the house, then they call in their friends.
  8. ma4rk


    Jun 28, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    Slightly OT: I had a little bit of pot in a backpack that I forgot about until I went thru the security at the airport. The sniffer dog must have smelt it and alerted its handler who looked at me & waved me past. I think I got away because I was wearing a suit!
  9. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    I've often wondered how that would work.

    Aren't dope dogs pretty much regular (albeit highly trained) dogs until their handlers put them on alert to hunt up something? the dog don't know dope is illegal, all they know is it earns them praise if their handler tells them to seek and they find what they've been conditioned to find.

    as far as I can tell, the dog sees the hunt for dope as either a game initiated by it's handler, or at the very least is prompted to perform a ""trick" for a reward. Does the dog need to be physically "switched on" before it will give a hoot about what it smells while riding around in the back seat?

    They are trained to respond only to their handler and I would think they'd not be much different than dogs trained to do high level tricks for entertainment. they do those tricks for an audience, but don't do the tricks just because an audience is present. Audience or not, they must first be prompted by their handler before they perform.

    In short, is a dope dog on the job 24/7 or do they require a command prompt from their handler before they'll alert to the smell of contraband?
  10. Seen this too with my ex-psychotic alcoholic step mom.

    She was drunk and was going completely unhinged, so we called the cops. There wasn't anything the cops could really do while she was inside, so the officer asked her to step outside for a sec and wham-o, drunken in public. It was pretty awesome. Actually had the same sort of thing happen to me, but that's a whole 'nother story, lol.
  11. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Or the dog was only trained to sniff out explosives.

    Don't trained sniffer dogs sell for like 20K?

    Also, aren't trained detection dogs pretty specialized? A dog trained to smell explosives won't alert to dope and vice versa?

    Here's my thinking on dope dogs at airports. Dope can't blow up and crash a plane so why waste time and money hunting down mostly misdemeanor amounts of dope when the object is to stop hijacking or blowing up planes?

    I base this on never having heard a story of a dope dog alerting on explosives. I've seen stories where explosives were found along with dope, but never a dope stop that resulted in only an explosives bust.
  12. Tony Flow MMMM

    Tony Flow MMMM

    Dec 4, 2012
    There's this thing called the "war on drugs" and the government is pretty keen on it
  13. I gotta think that if a dope dog, while not *on alert* or whatever, smelled the stuff, he'd likely get amped up to some degree- he/she would give some indication that something was up.
  14. dbbxyz


    Jan 29, 2010
    Is your front porch 'outside / in public', or still your private property?
  15. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Really? I haven't heard of it.

    Obvious answers aside, why would you put 40K worth of dogs in an airport to sniff out bombs (primary and most important goal) in one piece of luggage and a (misdemeanor) couple joints in another.

    Considering the overhead involved in placing a dope dog at the airport and how long it would take to pay that investment back on small busts while doing nothing to decrease the likelihood of a bomb getting past security, why not just put the bomb dog there and let the traveling public discourage itself from trying to slip some dope by on the assumption it's a multipurpose dog, and let the occasional individual who forgot they had a little pot in their carry on think they caught a break from the cops.

    Or we could go back to the question of if the dog at the airport was a dope dog and it alerted on some dope, why didn't it's handler act on the alert if his employer is so keen on their "war on drugs"? Why would a government drug warrior alerted to the presence of drugs by his highly trained very expensive drug dog, give the offender a pass to board an airplane with drugs when he can put another gold star on his work record?
  16. WalterBush


    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    Full disclosure, I'm a certified Fender technician working in a music store that carries Fender, Yamaha, and Ibanez products among others.
    I live in a zero-tolerance state. What's more, I live close to the border and within spitting distance of multiple government establishments that train dogs for all sorts of reasons, drug and bomb sniffing included.

    Yes, it's absolutely probable cause here. The dogs are ALWAYS "on", and most are trained for both bomb and drug detection. Whether the handler responds when the dog reacts, or whether they can determine that it was you and not the car next to them is a different question.
  17. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Have you ever watched any footage of detection dogs in training? Their handler is very hands on and verbal with the animal, working it into a state of high agitation in anticipation of what I'm sure the dog thinks of as a game which results in even more hands on and verbal praise if the dog makes it's handler happy by successfully accomplishing the task it is being set on.

    I'm not talking about initial training either, I'm talking about regular weekly training.

    If you watch a dope dog working, the handler goes through some type of excitation ritual with the animal prior to giving it the seek command.

    My dog loves to play ball but the only way she will do so is if I first pick up the ball and tease her a bit before I throw the ball. After that she will play until I get tired of throwing, but once I quit throwing she will ignore the ball until I pick it up the next time.

    I can also point my gun shaped hand at her and say bang and she will roll over on her back, but only if I tell her to sit first. If I "shoot" before making her sit she ignores me.

    A highly trained bird dog simply turned out in a field will find and flush quail without ever slowing down, but let that same dog know it's "on the clock" and it will detect, then carefully stalk up close enough so it's master knows where the birds are hiding and will then stand poised to flush until given that command. A well trained retriever will watch a dead duck fall and mark it's location, but won't make a move in that direction until commanded to do so. What would make a well trained detection dog any different?

    A dog, even a very smart one is still a dog and lives for (mostly) one thing, praise and approval from it's master. The more time one spends training a dog, the more disciplined, and therefore predictable the dog becomes.

    Based on my experience with dogs and observations of working dogs in training and the field, a well trained dog will only execute learned behaviors on command from it's master.
  18. Tony Flow MMMM

    Tony Flow MMMM

    Dec 4, 2012
  19. bassinplace


    Dec 1, 2008
    For pot? Nah, you shouldn't be. Will you be? I'd bet my boots you would.

  20. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Not in Colorado or Washington. Likely not in California neither.