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Federal judge rules Minneapolis police illegally searched Frey staffer's car

Gun, drug charges dismissed because evidence didn't support the officers' claim of smelling marijuana during a traffic stop, she found


March 28, 2022

Shari L. Gross, Star Tribune

Keegan "KJ" Rolenc worked out in a Brooklyn Center gym in March 2020. A federal judge has dismissed felony gun and drug charges against him after finding officers illegally searched his car.

A federal judge has dismissed felony drug and gun charges against a former policy fellow for Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey's office, finding two Minneapolis police officers illegally searched his car during a traffic stop in 2020.

U.S. District Judge Nancy Brasel ruled that evidence overwhelmingly did not support claims by Minneapolis officers Zerrick Fuller and Daniel Ledman that they smelled marijuana coming from Keegan "KJ" Rolenc's car after they pulled him over. Brasel threw out the evidence the officers collected during what she deemed an unconstitutional search, calling Ledman's testimony about the stop inconsistent and "not credible."

Across the United States, police frequently cite the distinctive odor of marijuana as legal justification for a warrantless vehicle search. Over the past few years, as more states legalize or decriminalize it, judges, legislators and police departments are starting to


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