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Case / Legal Brief for Mincey V. Arizona 437 U.S. 385 (1978)

Updated on July 16, 2012


Here I am writing a hub for the case Mincey V. Arizona case number 437 U.S. 385 (1978). Please feel free to ask questions.

1 Title and citation: Mincey V. Arizona 437 U.S. 385 (1978)

2 Type of Action: Violation of the 4th amendment right of seizure of narcotics at the scene of a murder, and that violation of the 14th amendment.

3 Facts : The facts of the case are as follows. An undercover drug operation was done in which one of the officers was killed, along with Mincey the defendant being shot. While in the hospital a thorough interrogation is done against the will of Mincey, and his house is illegally searched without warrant for 4 days. Upon finishing of the investigation Mincey was indicted for, and convicted of, murder, assault, and narcotics offenses. He then claimed that the evidence was gained illegally, and in violation of his rights.

4 Issues : Were Mincey’s rights violated by the search and seizure, and was his 14th amendment rights violated by the interrogation conducted by the officers.

5 History/Decision: In the lower courts Mincey was indicted for, and convicted of, murder, assault, and narcotics offenses. The Arizona Supreme Court reversed the Murder and Assault charges but affirmed the drug charges. The United States Supreme court reversed the Drug charges.

Reasoning: The reasoning behind the Supreme Court to overturn is as follows. They find that in the end a warrantless search of someone’s apartment violates their rights. That a 4 day search gave more than enough time to acquire a search warrant, and by not acquiring one the Supreme Court find no solution other than reversing the charges.

7 Rule of law : What we can take from this is that, every single person has the right to their privacy, and under no way can you do an unlawful search of their home without consent, or without a warrant. That this is what changed the case in the end in favor of Mincey.


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