Be careful of what you set out in the street for trash collection. A search by police officers of trash recovered from the place where it is left for collection is permissible under some circumstances. If the officers have an articulable basis justifying reasonable suspicion that the target of the search has engaged in violations of the law that might reasonably lead to evidence in the trash, the police can seize and search the trash without a search warrant.
A two part test exists for determining whether a trash search is reasonable. First, the trash must be retrieved in substantially the same manner as the trash collector would take it. Second, the search must be based on an articulable individualized suspicion that illegal activity is or has been taking place.