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Fernandez v. California

United States Supreme Court
134 S. Ct. 1126 (2014)



Police officers were investigating an assault and robbery involving gang activity. The officers were directed to a nearby building, where they observed a man run inside. The officers heard screams and the sounds of a fight coming from inside. The officers knocked on the door of the apartment, and Roxanne Rojas answered. She was clearly hurt and stated that she had been in a fight. When the officers asked Rojas to step outside so they could conduct a sweep of the apartment, Walter Fernandez (defendant) appeared at the door and told the officers they did not have a right to enter the apartment. Rojas identified Fernandez as her attacker, and the police arrested him. Approximately an hour later, officers returned to the apartment and told Rojas that they had arrested Fernandez and that he was in jail. The officers asked for consent to search the apartment, and Rojas agreed. The police discovered gang paraphernalia, a butterfly knife, clothing worn by the robbery suspect, and a sawed-off shotgun. The State of California (plaintiff) charged Fernandez with several crimes, including robbery. Fernandez moved to suppress the evidence discovered in the apartment, arguing that his earlier objection to the search meant Rojas’s consent was not effective.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Alito, J.)

Concurrence (Thomas, J.)

Concurrence (Scalia, J.)

Dissent (Ginsburg, J.)

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