Case Type: Drug Crime
Case Title: State v. Pellerin
Charges: Violation of Controlled Substance – Possession 2nd Degree
Jurisdiction: St. Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota
Case Results: DISMISSAL
Case Summary: Mr. Pellerin was charged with Violation of Controlled Substance Crime – Possession 2nd Degree. Mr. Pellerin was accused of selling drugs at a local St. Paul bar. The informant told the police a nickname alleged to be Mr. Pellerin and gave the police Mr. Pellerin’s license plate number. The police took the information and based on the plate information located Mr. Pellerin’s apartment. The police conducted a dog sniff with a police K9 outside Mr. Pellerin’s apartment in order to support their request for a search warrant. Mr. Pellerin’s apartment was searched pursuant to the search warrant. Mr. Whitlock successfully argued that the evidence seized in Mr. Pellerin’s case should be suppressed due to police violating his 4th Amendment constitutional right to be free from illegal searches and seizures and that the police did not have a sufficient nexus (connection) between the alleged drug sales at the bar and Mr. Pellerin’s home. Mr. Whitlock also argued there was not articulable suspicion or probable cause to justify the dog sniff of Mr. Pellerin’s apartment. The court agreed with Mr. Whitlock and the evidence (narcotics) discovered was suppressed and the case against Mr. Pellerin was dismissed. If convicted, Mr. Pellerin was facing 57 months (4.75 years) in prison.