Walker v. Walthall

In Walker v. Walthall, 121 Ariz. 121, 588 P.2d 863 (App. 1978) the Court held that a police officer's presence at the repossession of a vehicle constituted state action for purposes of Arizona's self-help repossession statute, now A.R.S. 47-9609 (2005), triggering the due process notice and hearing requirements of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Id. at 123-24, 588 P.2d at 865-66. In that case, the Court stated: The introduction of law enforcement officers into the area of self-help repossession, regardless of their degree of participation or non-participation in the actual events, would constitute state action, thereby invalidating a repossession without a proper notice and hearing. Id. at 124, 588 P.2d at 866. In Walker, the officer, in full uniform, accompanied the repossessor to the residence of the debtor and together they obtained the debtor's consent to the repossession. Id. at 122, 588 P.2d at 864. The debtor testified that he did not intend to give up his vehicle but, because of the presence of the officer, he relinquished possession. Id. at 123, 588 P.2d at 865.