Can an officer search me or my vehicle due to the fact I was driving on a suspended license and there was no illegal item in view?

I got pulled over for a traffic stop but I’m not on parole or probation.

Asked on February 7, 2013 under Criminal Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Even if a traffic stop is legitimate, a warrantless vehicle search incident to arrest is not permitted. That is unless it’s reasonable to believe that the arrestee might access the vehicle at the time of the search (apparently meaning that the arrestee is unsecured and within reach of the vehicle) or it’s reasonable to believe that the vehicle contains evidence of the offense of arrest.

Based on the limited facts presented, it's hard to advise further. At this point you should consult directy with a criminal defense lawyer in your area.

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