Arcata Police Officers Team Up for Illegal Search, anonymous Jan 23, 2011

I recently was pulled over by the Arcata Police Dept. The two officers approached my vehicle and asked me to open my door. I complied but did not unlock the rest of the doors. While the officer on the driver's side was talking to me about why he stopped me, he unlocked the doors. I re-locked them, and he said " leave the doors unlocked!"

As I was handing him my information, I looked over and noticed a secondary officer had opened my passenger side door and was looking through things that were in the frontseat. I did not consent to a search and feel that my rights were violated. I received a minor violation ticket that I intend to pay.  However this tactic of distracting the driver, unlocking the doors and having another officer proceed to search through my stuff made me feel as though my rights were violated. I do not use illegal drugs and I had none on me at the time, nor do I ever, but the fact that they were searching the passenger side without my consent is a violation of the law. They NEVER asked if they could search my car. Had this happened to a someone transporting drugs [and something was found] its very likely he would have had the case thrown out because there were video cameras around the business that I pulled into documenting the entire event.

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