In State v. Williams, the Court found that the common areas of boarding and rooming houses are not open to the public, and that the State had failed to establish otherwise with respect to the boarding house in this particular case.

In assessing the facts of this case, the Court was not persuaded that the boarding house here was open to the public, merely because its front door – which was outfitted with a lock – had been unlocked when officers arrived.

This case is significant as it means that police cannot enter a boarding or rooming house without a warrant or exception to the warrant requirement.

If you, a family member or friend have been charged with offenses after the police searched your living quarters in Jersey City, North Bergen, Hoboken, Bayonne, Secaucus, Union City, Kearny, Weehawken, East Newark, West New York, Harrison, Guttenberg or the greater North Jersey area, please do not hesitate to contact our office for a free consultation. An experienced criminal lawyer is your best chance at fighting an illegal search.

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