Norman v. State, 50603

Decision Date09 May 1975
Docket NumberNo. 3,No. 50603,50603,3
Citation216 S.E.2d 644,134 Ga.App. 767
PartiesJacob NORMAN v. The STATE
CourtGeorgia Court of Appeals

Carlisle & Newton, John T. Newton, Jr., Griffin, for appellant.

Ben J. Miller, Dist. Atty., Thomaston, for appellee.

Syllabus Opinion by the Court

DEEN, Presiding Judge.

The defendant, charged with the possession of moonshine liquor, appeals from the denial of his motion to suppress evidence. The facts are as follows: A peace officer received word from the ubiquitous reliable informer at about 11:00 a.m. on a Tuesday morning that on the previous weekend he had seen a large quantity of moonshine liquor in the possession of the defendant. The liquor was on a truck at a described location; the informer did not know how much longer it would be there. The officer made various telephone calls for instructions, ate lunch, and between 12:30 and 12:45 p.m. went with another agent to the defendant's farm. No search warrant was obtained or sought. The truck was found loaded with moonshine as described, and the defendant was then located and arrested. Held:

1. Prima facie, a search made within the curtilage of the owner without a warrant is unconstitutional and void. 'Curtilage' includes the yards and grounds of a particular address, its gardens, barns, buildings, etc. Bellamy v. State, 134 Ga.App. 340, 214 S.E.2d 383. The area outside the curtilage is not protected.

The defendant's farmhouse was about 50 feet from a public road. Behind it and about 100 feet away there was a barn. Behind the barn was a small meadow about 200 feet in depth and backing up to a pulp mill road. The truck was located under some trees in about the middle of this meadow. Was this area within the curtilage or not? A barn 70 or 80 yards away has been held to be within the curtilage (Walker v. United States, 225 F.2d 447 (5th Cir.)). In Brinlee v. State, Okl.Cr., 403 P.2d 253, a location in a pasture adjoining a barn and one hundred yards from the house was held to be within the protected area. The truck here which was within 200 feet of the house and within 100 feet from the barn must also be assumed to be within the curtilage.

2. It is also contended that because the liquor was stored in a motor vehicle a search warrant was unnecessary. It is true that requirements are less stringent for the search of cars than real estate, an example of the exigent circumstances exception and applied when the vehicle is attended and in motion. Cunningham v....

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21 cases
  • People v. Mayoff
    • United States
    • California Supreme Court
    • December 31, 1986 separated from house trailer by a fence and lying 100 to 200 yards from the trailer within the curtilage]; Norman v. State (1975) 134 Ga.App. 767, 216 S.E.2d 644 [small meadow behind a barn which was itself located 100 feet from a farm house within the curtilage]; Brinlee v. State (O......
  • U.S. v. Hensel, s. 81-1538
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — First Circuit
    • January 25, 1983
    ...572 S.W.2d 397 (1978) (observation of garden located behind home and separated by fence from home impermissible); Norman v. State, 134 Ga.App. 767, 216 S.E.2d 644 (1975) (search unconstitutional where agents searched truck located behind barn behind house); State v. Kender, 588 P.2d 447, 60......
  • United States v. Dunn, 85-998
    • United States
    • U.S. Supreme Court
    • March 3, 1987
    ...cribs, and other outbuildings' ") (quoting State v. Frizzelle, 243 N.C. 49, 51, 89 S.E.2d 725, 726 (1955)); Norman v. State, 134 Ga.App. 767, 768, 216 S.E.2d 644, 645 (1975) (truck containing moonshine liquor located 200 feet from farmhouse and 100 feet from barn was within curtilage); Brin......
  • State v. Lee
    • United States
    • Utah Supreme Court
    • June 30, 1981
    ...389 U.S. at 361, 88 S.Ct. at 516 (Harlan, J., concurring).8 Sanders v. State, 264 Ark. 433, 572 S.W.2d 397 (1978); Norman v. State, 134 Ga.App. 767, 216 S.E.2d 644 (1975) ("Prima facia", a search made within the curtilage of the owner without a warrant is unconstitutional and void." Id., 21......
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