Someone on your floor in your dorm or apartment building calls the police because they smell marijuana. An officer arrives and makes the same claim: It smells like pot. They use that as an excuse to enter the room, even though you tell them not to, claiming that a crime is taking place.
But did they actually smell marijuana? They may think they did, but there are numerous things that smell similar. Some examples include:
- Candles that are intentionally scented like marijuana
- Incense that you can burn in the dorm
- Certain flowers, like the spider flower, that you may have purchased
- Different types of air fresheners
- Plants like skunk cabbage, that naturally have the same odor
- Perfume oil that, like the candles noted above, is intentionally scented like pot
- Different types of beer or hops
- Certain body sprays or other perfumes
There’s also the issue with the smell coming from somewhere else. Maybe you had your back window open and someone walked by while smoking a joint. The smell is now in your dorm room or apartment, even though you never used it at all.
In short, while the officer may think they smell marijuana, there may be a completely innocent reason for it. You may not have broken the law in any way. The police officer may be convinced that you did, but don’t let them tell you that you have no options. You do have rights, and you need to know about the legal defense options at your disposal.