In this case, the defendant is accused of killing his wife. After getting some information from the defendant and victim’s granddaughter, a detective wrote a complaint for a search warrant which had some of the facts to support looking for evidence in the defendant’s house. It also had a long list of items to seize that were related to a narcotics investigation, as well as the evidence sought in the murder investigation.
The warrant however, only had the language regarding seizing the items related to the narcotics investigation. It made no mention of the items related to the murder, and the warrant did not incorporate the complaint by reference. Additionally, the detective who wrote the complaint and obtained the warrant did not participate in the search of the home.
A majority of the panel agreed with the trial court and upheld suppression. While they reserved the question for a later day whether a warrant can incorporate by reference the accompanying complaint, this warrant did not and held incorporation cannot be assumed. Further, there was no evidence that the officers who executed the warrant had the complaint for reference. The appellate court found this violated the Fourth Amendment and suppressed the evidence.
The case is People v. John Carlos Boose; 2018 IL App (2d) 170016.