The Iowa Supreme Court has ruled a parole agreement signed by a Scott County man was not a free pass to search his car. Isaac Baldon the third was released on parole in 2008 after serving time on drug charges.
His release included the condition that he sign an agreement that allowed his parole officer to search him, his home or his car at any time without a warrant or reasonable cause.Six months later, Bettendorf police discovered Baldon’s car at a motel and searched it based on the parole agreement.
Officers found a large quantity of marijuana in the car and charged him with possession of a controlled substance. Baldon asked to have the marijuana evidence thrown out, saying the parole agreement was an involuntary consent to searches and violated his constitutional rights.
The Iowa Supreme Court agreed with Baldon’s argument. It said forcing Baldon to sign the agreement to gain his freedom took away his bargaining power and made the search based solely on the parole agreement involuntary.
The Supreme Court reversed the district court ruling that the marijuana could be used as evidence, and sent the case back to district court.
See the full ruling here: Baldon ruling PDF