“I was staying at a hotel in the City of Buffalo but I didn’t pay the room charges for the past two weeks. When I was out driving to Kenmore for a doctors appointment, the hotel desk clerk allowed the Buffalo Police to search my room. Police found some weed and I was charged with possession. Since I didn’t pay my room charges, does that mean the hotel clerk could allow the cops to search my room?”


Under New York State law, while the general rule is that a warrantless search is invalid, this rule has many exceptions. One exception where a warrantless search could be valid is where a person with authority to consent, in fact, provides the police with consent to search the premises.

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In the case above, a guest is entitled to exclusive possession of the room and a hotel keeper does not have the power to consent to the search of the room. This is the case even if the guest is overdue in his payments.

Given the facts and the relevant law in New York, in all likelihood, such evidence could not be used against you.

For more questions, contact a Buffalo Criminal Defense Attorney today.

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