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Texas Court Rules Drug Seizure at Roadblock Illegal


July 1993

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ruled inadmissible 85 pounds of marijuana seized at a roadblock on grounds that the roadblock was illegal because the state failed to show it was necessary or operated according to uniform standards (AP, "Drug Seizure At Roadblock Is Ruled Illegal," Dallas Morning News, 6/24/93, 31A).

The June 23 decision reversed a lower appeals court ruling in the case of Juan Enrique Sanchez, who was indicted April 30, 1987 after marijuana was found in his car trunk at a Texas Department of Public Safety roadblock in Victoria County. Sanchez's 10-year-old car looked suspicious, said police, because it had a broken window and the license plate was secured by wire. Sanchez filed a motion to suppress the evidence, saying the police search was illegal.