Arizona high court limits right to warrantless home searches

PHOENIX — The Arizona Supreme Court won’t overturn a lower court opinion that limits police powers to search houses without a warrant.

Wednesday’s high court decision said police needed a warrant to search a house barring an actual emergency or danger to the community.

Police were called to Bradley Harold Wilson’s house in 2011 by neighbors who said he was acting strangely.

Wilson told paramedics he had a jar of dangerous mercury in the house that could potentially poison others and was taken to a hospital.

Police later went inside without a warrant looking for mercury and spotted marijuana plants.

A trial judge convicted Wilson of growing marijuana after ruling police didn’t need a warrant. But the court of appeals threw out the conviction, and the Supreme Court upheld that ruling.

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