1997 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A
By: Representative McCoy
House Bill 506
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 41-29-157, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE BUREAU OF NARCOTICS AGENTS TO EXECUTE SEARCH WARRANTS WITHOUT NOTICE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 41-29-157, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
41-29-157. (a) Issuance and execution of administrative inspection warrants and search warrants shall be as follows, except as provided in subsection (c) of this section:
(1) A judge of any state court of record, or any justice court judge within his jurisdiction, and upon proper oath or affirmation showing probable cause, may issue warrants for the purpose of conducting administrative inspections authorized by this article or rules thereunder, and seizures of property appropriate to the inspections. For purposes of the issuance of administrative inspection warrants, probable cause exists upon showing a valid public interest in the effective enforcement of this article or rules thereunder, sufficient to justify administrative inspection of the area, premises, building or conveyance in the circumstances specified in the application for the warrant. All such warrants shall be served during normal business hours;
(2) A search warrant shall issue only upon an affidavit of a person having knowledge or information of the facts alleged, sworn to before the judge or justice court judge and establishing the grounds for issuing the warrant. If the judge or justice court judge is satisfied that grounds for the application exist or that there is probable cause to believe they exist, he shall issue a warrant identifying the area, premises, building or conveyance to be searched, the purpose of the search, and, if appropriate, the type of property to be searched, if any. The warrant shall:
(A) State the grounds for its issuance and the name of each person whose affidavit has been taken in support thereof;
(B) Be directed to a person authorized by Section 41-29-159 to execute it;
(C) Command the person to whom it is directed to inspect the area, premises, building or conveyance identified for the purpose specified, and if appropriate, direct the seizure of the property specified;
(D) Identify the item or types of property to be seized, if any;
(E) Direct that it be served and designate the judge or magistrate to whom it shall be returned;
(3) A warrant issued pursuant to this section must be executed and returned within ten (10) days of its date unless, upon a showing of a need for additional time, the court orders otherwise. If property is seized pursuant to a warrant, a copy shall be given to the person from whom or from whose premises the property is taken, together with a receipt for the property taken. The return of the warrant shall be made promptly, accompanied by a written inventory of any property taken. The inventory shall be made in the presence of the person executing the warrant and of the person from whose possession or premises the property was taken, if present, or in the presence of at least one (1) credible person other than the person executing the warrant. A copy of the inventory shall be delivered to the person from whom or from whose premises the property was taken and to the applicant for the warrant;
(4) The judge or justice court judge who has issued a warrant shall attach thereto a copy of the return and all papers returnable in connection therewith and file them with the clerk of the appropriate state court for the judicial district in which the inspection was made.
(b) The bureau, the State Board of Pharmacy, or the State Board of Medical Licensure or the State Board of Dental Examiners may make administrative inspections of controlled premises in accordance with the following provisions:
(1) For purposes of this section only, "controlled premises" means:
(A) Places where persons registered or exempted from registration requirements under this article are required to keep records; and
(B) Places including factories, warehouses, establishments and conveyances in which persons registered or exempted from registration requirements under this article are permitted to hold, manufacture, compound, process, sell, deliver, or otherwise dispose of any controlled substance.
(2) When authorized by an administrative inspection warrant issued in accordance with the conditions imposed in this section an officer or employee designated by the bureau, the State Board of Pharmacy, the State Board of Medical Licensure or by the State Board of Dental Examiners, upon presenting the warrant and appropriate credentials to the owner, operator or agent in charge, may enter controlled premises for the purpose of conducting an administrative inspection.
(3) When authorized by an administrative inspection warrant, an officer or employee designated by the bureau, the State Board of Pharmacy, the State Board of Medical Licensure or by the State Board of Dental Examiners may:
(A) Inspect and copy records required by this article to be kept;
(B) Inspect, within reasonable limits and in a reasonable manner, controlled premises and all pertinent equipment, finished and unfinished material, containers and labeling found therein, and, except as provided in paragraph (5) of this subsection, all other things therein, including records, files, papers, processes, controls and facilities bearing on violation of this article; and
(C) Inventory any stock of any controlled substance therein and obtain samples thereof.
(4) This section does not prevent the inspection without a warrant of books and records pursuant to an administrative subpoena, nor does it prevent entries and administrative inspections, including seizures of property, without a warrant:
(A) If the owner, operator or agent in charge of the controlled premises consents;
(B) In situations presenting imminent danger to health or safety;
(C) In situations involving inspection of conveyances if there is reasonable cause to believe that the mobility of the conveyance makes it impracticable to obtain a warrant;
(D) In any other exceptional or emergency circumstance where time or opportunity to apply for a warrant is lacking; or
(E) In all other situations in which a warrant is not constitutionally required.
(5) An inspection authorized by this section shall not extend to financial data, sales data, other than shipment data, or pricing data unless the owner, operator or agent in charge of the controlled premises consents in writing.
(c) Any agent of the bureau authorized to execute a search warrant involving controlled substances, the penalty for which is imprisonment for more than one (1) year, may, without notice of his authority and purpose, break open an outer door or inner door, or window of a building, or any part of the building, if the judge issuing the warrant:
(1) Is satisfied that there is probable cause to believe that:
(A) The property sought may, and, if such notice is given, will be easily and quickly destroyed or disposed of; or
(B) The giving of such notice will immediately endanger the life or safety of the executing officer or another person; and
(2) Has included in the warrant a direction that the officer executing the warrant shall not be required to give such notice.
Any officer acting under such warrant shall, as soon as practical, after entering the premises, identify himself and give the reasons and authority for his entrance upon the premises.
Search warrants which include the instruction that the executing officer shall not be required to give notice of authority and purpose as authorized by this subsection (c) shall be issued only by the county court or county judge in vacation, chancery court or by the chancellor in vacation, by the circuit court or circuit judge in vacation, or by a justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.