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Driveway wasn’t part of curtilage

Oconto County v. Joseph R. Arndt, 2014AP2955, District 3, 7/21/15 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs)

Arndt was not arrested within the curtilage of his home under the test established by United States v. Dunn, 480 U.S. 294 (1987).

Police arrested Arndt for OWI after they found him passed out, sprawled halfway inside and halfway outside his truck, which was parked in a “worn” parking area adjacent to the driveway about 40 to 50 yards from his home. (¶¶3-4). This area wasn’t within the curtilage under the Dunn factors, which gauge whether the area claimed to be curtilage is so intimately tied to the home itself that it should be placed under the home’s umbrella of protection, 480 U.S. at 301. The distance from the home was substantial; there were no fences enclosing the area; the area was visible to passersby from the street; and the apparent function of the area as a place to park, and thus implicitly open to invitees, and not intimately tied to the home. (¶¶6-10, 16-18).

Another day, another court of appeals decision finding a driveway wasn’t part of a home’s curtilage. A recent decision reaching the same conclusion is noted here.

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