PIERRE, S.D. May 19 2017 The South Dakota Supreme Court has upheld law enforcement's authority to perform a warrantless search following a citizen's arrest.
The ruling involves a 2015 case in which a person was accused of shoplifting and was detained at a retail store by on-site security until police arrived.
The police officer who responded searched the woman's purse without a warrant and found a glass pipe which tested positive for methamphetamine. The woman challenged the authority of the police officer to conduct a search of her purse following a citizen's arrest.
The court held that Lee was validly placed under citizen's arrest by the retail store security officer. And, that because a citizen's arrest was made, law enforcement had the authority to search without a warrant.