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I have also presented some additional matters for you to consider and some questions I would like you to think about that will hopefully assist your case. In some cases, courts will determine what is “legitimate expectation of privacy” when resolving disputes the Fourth Amendment protects people from unreasonable searches and seizures. This standard is applied when a Fourth Amendment applies only where an individual has a reasonable expectation of privacy in the place searched or the items seized.

There is the presumption that a guest in a hotel or motel room has a reasonable expectation of privacy. However, this presumption may be overcome, a guest generally does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in his hotel room after the rental period has terminated. Therefore, if the court finds that either of these conditions has been met, the court may determine if an individual has a reasonable expectation of privacy in a hotel room past check out time. As I stated above, a guest whose rental period has expired may still have a reasonable expectation of privacy.

In order to make such a determination, the court takes into consideration various factors including [a] guest may still have a legitimate expectation of privacy even after his rental period has terminated, if there is a pattern or practice which would make that expectation reasonable. The court also considers the acknowledged that a warrantless search immediately after checkout time would be improper if the hotel, as most hotels do, had a pattern or practice of allowing guests some leeway regarding the checkout time.

In making this determination, the court takes into consideration such factors as the length of time after check out, the check out policy of the hotel/motel, as well as the methods of law enforcement. The court also weighs the time that has elapsed since the guest checked in and paid for intended stay parent is also taken into consideration. There are several court cases that can assist us in understanding how the courts apply these factors. In one particular case parent is also taken into consideration. In this case, the defendant paying $28. 5 for a one night single occupancy stay; he failed to check out by the regular checkout time which was 12:00 p. m. the next day. This arrangement eventually resulted in the defendant’s companion deposited $100 with the front desk clerk as advance rental payment on the defendant’s account. The defendant believed that the $100 deposit, together with his initial $28. 45 payment, would secure for him the $106. 00 per week rental rate in lieu of the higher daily rate. When the defendant was arrested after a report stated that his vehicle was stolen. The officers returned to his room to get his companion out of the room.

Additionally, a complete search of the room was ordered without a warrant. Inside a closed dresser drawer the officers found a cloth bag secured at the top with a draw string. They opened the closed bag and found over two ounces of cocaine. As a result, the court found that the above factors constituted the defendant’s had a reasonable expectation of privacy in the motel room for three reasons. First, a few days earlier, when the defendant had stayed past check-out time, instead of evicting him the hotel permitted him to extend his stay and pay for the additional term of occupancy.

Second, the manager testified that it was the motel’s policy to ask those guests staying past checkout time whether they would be leaving or extending their stay. It was not the motel’s policy to evict guests who were staying past checkout time for brief periods. Third, the defendant had given the hotel a large cash deposit, which may have led him to believe that he was paid up through the rest of the week. In another case, the court determined that although a reasonable expectation of privacy did exist in a motel room after check-out time, that expectation of privacy had been extinguished prior to the officers’ entering the room.

The defendants began renting a room at the New Otani Hotel. The hotel left a message on the voice mail in the defendants’ room, reminding them of the noon checkout time. One defendant left the hotel before noon. However, shortly after noon, the executive housekeeper knocked on the door of the room to inquire when the remaining defendant would be checking out. The remaining defendant told her that he intended to stay until 12:30 p. m. The housekeeper told remaining defendant “OK” and said that she would tell the front desk.

At 12:40 p. m. , the manager and six officers knocked on the room door and told remaining defendant that he was there to evict him. At that point, the police arrested remaining defendant and a search of his person yielded a baggie containing a substance resembling crystal methamphetamine. The court found that while the remaining defendant had a reasonable expectation of privacy beyond the noon check-out time, that expectation of privacy lasted only until 12:30 p. m. which was prior to the officer’s entering the room at 12:40 p. m.

The court also found that the hotel practices extended the remaining defendant expectation of privacy in the room past check-out time but only until 12:30 p. m. Also, the housekeeper testified that the reason why the housekeeping staff did not tell guests to leave immediately at noon is because “thirty minutes is . . . not that much difference. ” Thus, although the New Otani permits guests some leeway with respect to checkout time, the leeway time is limited. Further, the record supports the finding that remaining defendant stated only that he planned to remain in the room until 12:30 p. . The court also found that one of the defendants had left the room already. Finally, the hotel’s 10 a. m. reminder call of the checkout time, and the housekeeper’s noon visit, put the remaining defendant on notice that any extension past noon would be of limited duration. Therefore, it was determined that expectation of privacy had been extinguished prior to the officers’ entering the room. In yet another case, the defendants did not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their hotel room an hour after checkout time.

The defendants were guests at a motel and that the guests were in the room past the 11:00 a. m. check-out time. At about 12:30 p. m. , with the manager’s consent, the officers went to the room to tell the occupants to either vacate the room or pay for an additional night. Just as the officers arrived at the room, the door opened and two individuals exited. While the door was open, one of the officers noticed one of the occupants of the room run into the bathroom. The officer entered the bathroom and noticed a vial of what he believed to be crack cocaine in plain view.

The officer arrested the defendants and during a search incident to the arrest, the officers found a sock containing bags with crack cocaine. The court found that that in this case, there was no reasonable expectation of privacy for the following reasons. First, the defendants did not have a pattern or practice of staying past check-out time. Second, the motel had a strict policy of enforcing checkout times. The policy states that all guests must check out by 11:00 a. m. The manager testified that if guests do not check out by 11:30 a. m. the hotel contacts them and requests that they re-register or leave. The manager also testified that he has entered rooms and evicted the occupants when they stayed past 11:30 a. m. In addition, the manager testified that on several occasions he has called the police to assist him in evicting individuals who have stayed past 11:30 a. m. without paying for an additional night. It is important that you think about the factors the court considers, and how they apply to your case. We should continue to discuss the impact of witness testimony.

Also, we should explore whether the motel had a policy to ask guests staying past checkout time whether they would be leaving or extending their stay and it was not the motel’s policy to evict guests who were staying past checkout time for brief periods. For instance, individuals stayed in your room for only five to ten minutes and left. A list of all individuals that visited and their length of stay would help determine your defense and set up a timeline of events? Please call and set up a time for us to meet so that we can further discuss your case. Sincerely, Shannon Yonkers Paralegal SSY/ssy