Odor and unsealed bag of marijuana in car provide probable cause to search the passenger’s purse.
People v. McGee, 2020 WL 4783643 (Cal.App. 3 Dist.); filed 7/28/20; published 8/18/20
Facts and Procedural Background
On July 28, 2018, Stockton Police Officers initiated a traffic stop of McGee’s car after noticing its registration had expired. The officers noted the scent of unburned marijuana. McGee denied having any marijuana in the car. But an officer saw an unsealed bag of marijuana in the passenger’s cleavage. The officers informed McGee they were going to search the car. McGee did not consent to a search. The bag of marijuana was seized from the passenger. A zipped purse on the passenger floorboard was searched for “anything illegal, any contraband that could be in the vehicle.” A loaded handgun was seized from the purse.