What to do if the police entered my dorm room when I was at home and took a weed pipe?

They came back 2 days later and arrested me without reading my rights. I go to court in 3 days. Do I have rights to let the judge know that they entered without a warrant and did not read my rights?

Asked on January 26, 2013 under Criminal Law, Michigan


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

You do have the right to let the judge know when a search is illegal-- but you have to do so in the correct form and at the correct time. 

If by "going to court," you mean that you have a first setting, then you should ask the court for a court appointed attorney if you cannot afford one to help you file a motion to suppress (which is essentially a written objection to the search).  What you describe is a pre-trial matter which a defendant is usually required to make in writing.  After you file a formal objection to the search of your dorm, the court will then set your case for a hearing.  If you don't argue your issues properly, the judge can overrule your motion and the appellate courts will back him.  You could potentially do it on your own, but you are risking blowing this opportunity to have the evidence thrown out by a procedural technicality if you do not present the issue correctly.

If by "going to court" you mean that you are set for trial, then you need to request a continuance so that you can file a pre-trial "motion to suppress" and find an attorney (appointed or retained) to help you with your pleadings.  Once you have an attorney, you can proceed as described above.  If the judge denies your request for an attorney and a continuance, make sure that you formally state that you are objecting to the court requiring you to move forward without counsel.  This objection will help you file an appeal, should you be found guilty of the allegations.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.