“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” ("Fourth amendment,”)
The Fourth Amendment states that we are protected from unreasonable searches; however, an exact definition of an unreasonable search is not given. We are told that a warrant will be issued on probable cause, but not that an officer of the law can request that a person submit to a search voluntarily. According to Constitutional Law there are three main reasons for a search to be considered unreasonable.
1- There was insufficient information to justify the search. (Kanovitz, J. 2010). The officer must have knowledge of facts to give probable cause.
2- The officer conducting the search failed to obtain a search warrant when one would be needed (Kanovitz, J. 2010). An example would be a full search of a person or property in order to gather evidence for a case.
3- Excessive force was used to execute the search. (Kanovitz, J. 2010). This can occur when the officer has the required search warrant but when they go to execute the warrant they use force above and beyond what would be considered normal in such a search.
If any of these apply to an arrest, this could cause the arrest to be considered unconstitutional.
The constitutionality and definition of “search” has had its own role in Supreme Court cases. Originally the definition of “search” was interpreted as” to require a physical intrusion into a constitutionally protected location”. In a very early case, Olmstead v. United States, 277 U.S. 438 (1928), in this case Mr. Olmstead had been convicted of “violating the National Prohibition Act” (Kanovitz, J. 2010) because of evidence that was gathered by the police by placing a listening device