Stillwater News Press

January 3, 2013

Judge: Police obtained laptop legally

By Russell Hixson
Stillwater NewsPress

STILLWATER, Okla. — Payne County District Judge Stephen Kistler overruled two motions that could have kept key evidence and statements out of court in a child pornography case.

A motion arguing that the seizure of a laptop at a workplace without a warrant was unlawful was overruled and a motion arguing a statement made by the defendant that police find the laptop was made during unlawful detention was also overruled.

Garry West, 52, of Perkins has been charged with aggravated possession of child pornography and unlawful access to a computer to violate Oklahoma state statutes. Investigators found nearly 300 images of erotic images involving children on his personal laptop computer, court records show.

The ruling hinged on a “reasonable expectation of privacy” court records show. West’s red personal laptop was found in his work’s server room after West told investigators it was there. Police had a search warrant for West’s home but determined there was another computer somewhere else and went to West’s workplace.