Court Opinions ›› Georgia v. Randolph (2006)
GEORGIA, Petitioner v. SCOTT FITZ RANDOLPH
SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
126 S. Ct. 1515; 164 L. Ed. 2d 208; 2006 U.S. LEXIS 2498; 74 U.S.L.W. 4176; 19 Fla. L. Weekly Fed. S 138
November 8, 2005, Argued
March 22, 2006, Decided
PRIOR HISTORY: ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF GEORGIA.
Respondent's estranged wife gave police permission to search the marital residence for items of drug use after respondent, who was also present, had unequivocally refused to give consent. Respondent was indicted for possession of cocaine, and the trial court denied his motion to suppress the evidence as products of a warrantless search unauthorized by consent. The Georgia Court of Appeals reversed. In affirming, the State Supreme Court held that consent given by one occupant is not valid in the face of the refusal of another physically present occupant, and distinguished United States v. Matlock, 415 U.S. 164, 94 S. Ct. 988, 39 L. Ed. 2d 242, which recognized the permissibility of an entry made with the consent of one co-occupant in the other's absence.
In the circumstances here at issue, a physically present co-occupant's stated refusal to permit entry renders warrantless entry and search unreasonable and invalid as to him.