State v. Joshua R. Eastman, unpublished opinion, App. Div. Docket No. A-3436-11T1 (October 17, 2012) – “By leave granted, the State appeals from an … order suppressing evidence, illegal drugs, seized during a warrantless search of defendant's motor vehicle following a one-vehicle accident…. When defendant's vehicle became accessible, Trooper Ferrara entered the vehicle and searched the glove compartment without providing defendant the opportunity to obtain the documents. At that point, defendant was in police custody at the barracks approximately twenty minutes away and could have been escorted back to the scene in order to retrieve his documents. The record gives no indication that exigent circumstances existed, necessitating immediate action. Further, Trooper Ferrara did not otherwise have an independent basis for probable cause or a reasonable articulable suspicion to search defendant's vehicle…. [T]he State failed to sustain its burden of demonstrating that the search falls within an exception to the constitutional requirement that police obtain a warrant before conducting a search. Accordingly, we affirm the order on appeal and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.”
Jason Charles Matey, Esq.