Kentucky V. King Case Brief

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Case Citation: Kentucky. v.King, 563 U.S. (2011) Parties: Kentucky, Petitioner Hollis King, Respondent Facts: In Lexington, Kentucky, police officers entered an apartment building. They were in search of a suspect who had sold cocaine to an undercover informant. After a chase, police lost the suspect. They came to an apartment building where they smelled marijuana coming from one of the doors. After knocking and identifying themselves as the police, they heard noises that they described as shuffling as if to destroy evidence. Police then kicked the door in and entered the apartment. Upon entering the apartment, police found drugs in plain view. During another search, police found even more evidence. Procedural History: The case was Issues: Issue 1: Whether the exclusionary rule applies in this case. The rule forbids using illegally obtained evidence in court unless it was an emergency circumstance. However, the police stated there were exigent circumstances that surpassed the need for a warrant. At the same time under the police-created exigency doctrine, exigent circumstances do not justify a warrantless search if the circumstances were created by the police [ii]. Holdings: Issue 1: The police entered the apartment building under exigent circumstances believing that evidence was being destroyed. However, the Supreme Court reversed this decision based on the fact that the exigent circumstances were created by the police themselves. Reasoning: Issue 1: The police were not in pursuit of the suspect when they initially entered the apartment building. There was not any evidence that the suspect even knew he was being followed. Decision: King entered a conditional guilty plea with his right to appeal to get the evidence suppressed based on it being an illegal search. The Kentucky Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction stating

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