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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 118789
Experience:  Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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My grandson was using my car. He was involved in some kind

Customer Question

My grandson was using my car. He was involved in some kind of drug possession, but the
car was in a neighbors driveway when the police arrested him. The police impounded the car and originally asked for $300 to release it. Now they want$1000 bvut I do not know
anything about the case against my grandson except one of the policemen said i9t was no
involved in the case. The police must have checked the registration and must have known
that my Grandson was not the owner. Can the police take possession of property that does
not belong to the person being arrested? Is this defined with clarity by the search and
seizure laws?
Dennis Barth
Rockford, MI 49341 (###) ###-####***@******.***
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Unfortunately, if the car was used in any criminal activity or if it is believed to potentially be the product or proceed from illegal activity (notice the OR), even if it does not belong to the defendant that vehicle may be seized by the police until it is verified that it is neither. Search and seizure laws do not specify other than the police need "clear and convincing evidence" that the vehicle was either used in a crime or was proceeds of criminal activity. If they improperly seized the vehicle, you are entitled to not only release, but you can sue for damages for them improperly seizing the car without the clear and convincing evidence, but you need to start by filing a suit in court for a petition to release the car and waive the storage and prove not just that it was not used in a crime or proceeds of criminal acts BUT also that they had no clear and convincing evidence of it being such.
Your next step as owner is you are entitled to file a petition to the court for release of your vehicle. You can also ask the court, in your petition to release the car, to waive the charges for storage. However, the longer you wait on this, those storage fees are going up, so you need to file the petition to release the vehicle and to waive storage fees in order to get your vehicle back.