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United States v. Ross

Significance, Further Readings


United States


Albert Ross, Jr.

Petitioner's Claim

That police officers, who had properly stopped an automobile and who had probable cause to believe that there were illegal substances in the car, did not violate the Constitution by searching a container in the car without first obtaining a search warrant.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Andrew L. Frey

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

William J. Gerber

Justices for the Court

Harry A. Blackmun, Warren E. Burger, Sandra Day O'Connor, Lewis F. Powell, Jr., William H. Rehnquist, John Paul Stevens (writing for the Court)

Justices Dissenting

William J. Brennan, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Byron R. White


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

1 June 1982


That when the police properly stop and search an automobile, the police may search any container within the automobile which could hold the illegal substance which is the subject of the search.

Related Cases

  • Carroll v. United States, 267 U.S. 132 (1925).
  • Katz v. United States, 389 U.S. 347 (1967).
  • Mincey v. Arizona, 437 U.S. 385 (1978).
  • California v. Acevedo, 500 U.S. 565 (1991).

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1981 to 1988