Minnesota v. Olson, No. 88-1916

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtWHITE, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which BRENNAN, MARSHALL, STEVENS, O'CONNOR, SCALIA, and KENNEDY, JJ., joined. STEVENS
Citation109 L.Ed.2d 85,495 U.S. 91,110 S.Ct. 1684
Decision Date18 April 1990
Docket NumberNo. 88-1916
PartiesMINNESOTA, Petitioner v. Robert Darren OLSON

495 U.S. 91
110 S.Ct. 1684
109 L.Ed.2d 85
MINNESOTA, Petitioner

v.

Robert Darren OLSON.

No. 88-1916.
Argued Feb. 26, 1990.
Decided April 18, 1990.
Syllabus

Police suspected respondent Olson of being the driver of the getaway car used in a robbery-murder. After recovering the murder weapon and arresting the suspected murderer, they surrounded the home of two women with whom they believed Olson had been staying. When police telephoned the home and told one of the women that Olson should come out, a male voice was heard saying, "tell them I left." Without seeking permission and with weapons drawn, they entered the home, found Olson hiding in a closet, and arrested him. Shortly thereafter, he made an inculpatory statement, which the trial court refused to suppress. He was convicted of murder, armed robbery, and assault. The Minnesota Supreme Court reversed, ruling that Olson had a sufficient interest in the women's home to challenge the legality of his warrantless arrest, that the arrest was illegal because there were no exigent circumstances to justify warrantless entry, and that his statement was tainted and should have been suppressed.

Held: The arrest violated Olson's Fourth Amendment rights. Pp. 95-101.

(a) Olson's status as an overnight guest is alone sufficient to show that he had an expectation of privacy in the home that society is prepared to recognize as reasonable. See Rakas v. Illinois, 439 U.S. 128, 143-144, 99 S.Ct. 421, 430-431, 58 L.Ed.2d 387; cf. Jones v. United States, 362 U.S. 257, 80 S.Ct. 725, 4 L.Ed.2d 697. The distinctions relied on by the State between this case and Jones —that, there, the overnight guest was left alone and had a key to the premises with which he could come and go and admit and exclude others—are not legally determinative. All citizens share the expectation that hosts will more likely than not respect their guests' privacy interests even if the guests have no legal interest in the premises and do not have the legal authority to determine who may enter the household. Pp. 95-100.

(b) The State Supreme Court applied essentially the correct standard in holding that there were no exigent circumstances justifying the warrantless entry: An entry may be justified by hot pursuit of a fleeing felon, the imminent destruction of evidence, the need to prevent a suspect's escape, or the risk of danger to the police or others; but, in the absence of hot pursuit, there must be at least probable cause to believe that one or more of the other factors were present and, in assessing the risk of danger, the gravity of the crime and likelihood that the suspect is

Page 92

armed should be considered. This Court is not inclined to disagree with the fact-specific application of this standard by the lower court, which pointed out that, although a grave crime was involved, Olson was known not to be the murderer and the murder weapon had been recovered; that there was no suggestion of danger to the women; that several police squads surrounded the house; that it was Sunday afternoon; that it was evident that the suspect was going nowhere; and that if he came out of the house he would have been promptly apprehended. Pp. 100-101.

436 N.W.2d 92, affirmed.

WHITE, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which BRENNAN, MARSHALL, STEVENS, O'CONNOR, SCALIA, and KENNEDY, JJ., joined. STEVENS, J., post, p. 101, and KENNEDY, J., post, p. 102, filed concurring opinions. REHNQUIST, C.J., and BLACKMUN, J., dissented.

Anne E. Peek, Minneapolis, Minn., for petitioner.

Stephen J. Marzen, Washington, D.C., for U.S., as amicus curiae, supporting the petitioner, by special leave of Court.

Glenn P. Bruder, Minneapolis, Minn., for respondent.

Page 93

Justice WHITE delivered the opinion of the Court.

The police in this case made a warrantless, nonconsensual entry into a house where respondent Robert Olson was an overnight guest and arrested him. The issue is whether the arrest violated Olson's Fourth Amendment rights. We hold that it did.

I

Shortly before 6 a.m. on Saturday, July 18, 1987, a lone gunman robbed an Amoco gasoline station in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and fatally shot the station manager. A police officer heard the police dispatcher report and suspected Joseph Ecker. The officer and his partner drove immediately to Ecker's home, arriving at about the same time that an Oldsmobile arrived. The driver of the Oldsmobile took evasive action, and the car spun out of control and came to a stop. Two men fled the car on foot. Ecker, who was later identified as the gunman, was captured shortly thereafter inside his home. The second man escaped.

Inside the abandoned Oldsmobile, police found a sack of money and the murder weapon. They also found a title certificate with the name Rob Olson crossed out as a secured party, a letter addressed to a Roger R. Olson of 3151 Johnson Street, and a videotape rental receipt made out to Rob Olson and dated two days earlier. The police verified that a Robert Olson lived at 3151 Johnson Street.

The next morning, Sunday, July 19, a woman identifying herself as Dianna Murphy called the police and said that a man by the name of Rob drove the car in which the gas station killer left the scene and that Rob was planning to leave town by bus. About noon, the same woman called again, gave her address and phone number, and said that a man named Rob had told a Maria and two other women, Louanne and Julie, that he was the driver in the Amoco robbery. The caller stated that Louanne was Julie's mother and that the two women lived at 2406 Fillmore Northeast. The detective-in-charge who took the second phone call sent po-

Page 94

lice officers to 2406 Fillmore to check out Louanne and Julie. When police arrived they determined that the dwelling was a duplex and that Louanne Bergstrom and her daughter Julie lived in the upper unit but were not home. Police spoke to Louanne's mother, Helen Niederhoffer, who lived in the lower unit. She confirmed that a Rob Olson had been staying upstairs but was not then in the unit. She promised to call the police when Olson returned. At 2 p.m., a pickup order, or "probable cause arrest bulletin," was issued for Olson's arrest. The police were instructed to stay away from the duplex.

At approximately 2:45 p.m., Niederhoffer called police and said Olson had returned. The detective-in-charge instructed police officers to go to the house and surround it. He then telephoned Julie from headquarters and told her Rob should come out of the house. The detective heard a male voice say, "tell them I left." Julie stated that Rob had left, whereupon at 3 p.m. the detective ordered the police to enter the house. Without seeking permission and with weapons drawn, the police entered the upper unit and found respondent hiding in a closet. Less than an hour after his arrest, respondent made an inculpatory statement at police headquarters.

The Hennepin County trial court held a hearing and denied respondent's motion to suppress his statement. App. 3-13. The statement was admitted into evidence at Olson's trial, and he was convicted on one count of first-degree murder, three counts of armed robbery, and three counts of second-degree assault. On appeal, the Minnesota Supreme Court reversed. 436 N.W.2d 92 (1989). The court ruled that respondent had a sufficient interest in the Bergstrom home to challenge the legality of his warrantless arrest there, that the arrest was illegal because there were no exigent circumstances to justify a warrantless entry,1 and that respondent's

Page 95

statement was tainted by that illegality and should have been suppressed.2 Because the admission of the statement was not harmless beyond reasonable doubt, the court reversed Olson's conviction and remanded for a new trial.3

We granted the State's petition for certiorari, 493 U.S. 806, 110 S.Ct. 46, 107 L.Ed.2d 15 (1989), and now affirm.

II

It was held in Payton v. New York, 445 U.S. 573, 100 S.Ct. 1371, 63 L.Ed.2d 639 (1980), that a suspect should not be arrested in his house without an arrest warrant, even though there is probable cause to arrest him. The purpose of the decision was not to protect the person of the suspect but to protect his home from entry in the absence of a magistrate's finding of probable cause. In this case, the court below held that Olson's warrantless arrest was illegal because he had a sufficient connection with the premises to be treated like a householder. The State challenges that conclusion.

Since the decision in Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347, 88 S.Ct. 507, 19 L.Ed.2d 576 (1967), it has been the law that "capacity to claim the protection of the Fourth Amendment depends . . . upon whether the person who claims the protection of the Amendment has a legitimate expectation of privacy in the invaded place." Rakas v. Illinois, 439 U.S. 128, 143, 99 S.Ct. 421, 430, 58 L.Ed.2d 387 (1978). A subjective expectation of privacy is legitimate if it is " 'one that society

Page 96

is prepared to recognize as "reasonable," ' " id., at 143-144, n. 12, 99 S.Ct., at 430, n. 12, quoting Katz, supra, at 361, 88 S.Ct., at 516 (Harlan, J., concurring).

The State argues that Olson's relationship to the premises does not satisfy the 12 factors which in its view...

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1865 practice notes
  • Corrigan v. Dist. of Columbia, No. 15-7098
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • November 8, 2016
    ...must have “at least probable cause to believe that one or more of the ... factors justifying entry were present.” Minnesota v. Olson , 495 U.S. 91, 100, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990). As this court explained in United States v. Dawkins , 17 F.3d 399, 403 (D.C. Cir. 1994), “an except......
  • U.S. v. Gray, No. 05-4397.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (4th Circuit)
    • July 2, 2007
    ...(1968). And, more recently, the Supreme Court extended the Fourth Amendment's privacy protections to overnight guests. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 98, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 The Fourth Amendment's protection of the home does not turn on whether illegal activity takes place ther......
  • U.S. v. Bin Laden, No. S(7) 98 CR.1023(LBS).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • December 5, 2000
    ...El-Hage allowed al Qaeda associates to stay at his home is said to have reduced his expectation of privacy. But cf. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990) (affording Fourth Amendment protection to an overnight guest because he had a reasonable expectation of ......
  • Williams v. State, No. 4 Sept. Term, 2002.
    • United States
    • Maryland Court of Appeals
    • December 19, 2002
    ...the ready destructibility of the evidence, and the reasonable belief that contraband is about to be removed. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 100-01, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 1690, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990); United States v. Riley, 968 F.2d 422, 425 (5th Cir.1992). We determine 813 A.2d 242 exigency on ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1863 cases
  • Corrigan v. Dist. of Columbia, No. 15-7098
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • November 8, 2016
    ...must have “at least probable cause to believe that one or more of the ... factors justifying entry were present.” Minnesota v. Olson , 495 U.S. 91, 100, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990). As this court explained in United States v. Dawkins , 17 F.3d 399, 403 (D.C. Cir. 1994), “an except......
  • U.S. v. Gray, No. 05-4397.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (4th Circuit)
    • July 2, 2007
    ...(1968). And, more recently, the Supreme Court extended the Fourth Amendment's privacy protections to overnight guests. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 98, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 The Fourth Amendment's protection of the home does not turn on whether illegal activity takes place ther......
  • U.S. v. Bin Laden, No. S(7) 98 CR.1023(LBS).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • December 5, 2000
    ...El-Hage allowed al Qaeda associates to stay at his home is said to have reduced his expectation of privacy. But cf. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990) (affording Fourth Amendment protection to an overnight guest because he had a reasonable expectation of ......
  • Williams v. State, No. 4 Sept. Term, 2002.
    • United States
    • Maryland Court of Appeals
    • December 19, 2002
    ...the ready destructibility of the evidence, and the reasonable belief that contraband is about to be removed. Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91, 100-01, 110 S.Ct. 1684, 1690, 109 L.Ed.2d 85 (1990); United States v. Riley, 968 F.2d 422, 425 (5th Cir.1992). We determine 813 A.2d 242 exigency on ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
2 books & journal articles
  • Criminal Justice Decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States, 2005 Term
    • United States
    • Criminal Justice Review Nbr. 31-4, December 2006
    • December 1, 2006
    ...(2006).Kansas v. Marsh, 126 S.Ct. 2516 (2006).Lawrence v. Florida, cert. granted (U.S. Mar. 27, 2006) (No. 05-8820).Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91 (1990).Neder v. United States, 527 U.S. 1 (1999).Nelson v. Campbell, 541 U.S. 63 (2004).Oregon v. Guzek, 126 S.Ct. 1226 (2006).Rice v. Collins,......
  • Law Enforcement Case Law
    • United States
    • Criminal Justice Review Nbr. 30-2, September 2005
    • September 1, 2005
    ...v. Buie, 494 U.S. 325 (1990).Michigan v. Jackson, 475 U.S. 625 (1986).Minnesota v. Dickerson, 508 U.S. 366 (1993).Minnesota v. Olson, 495 U.S. 91 (1990).Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966).New York v. Burger, 482 U.S. 691 (1987).New York v. Quarles, 467 U.S. 649 (1984).Nix v. Williams, ......

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