Discussion of Search Warrants and Probable Cause

Topics: Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, Criminal law, United States Constitution Pages: 4 (1288 words) Published: March 8, 2012
Discussion of Search Warrants and Probable Cause
Larry Brueland
AIU Online

This paper will review the definition and discuss the process in which a search warrant is obtained in accordance with the Fourth Amendment requirements. We will also show the definition of Probable Cause and the standards for which it is met. There are seven types of searches that do not require a warrant. We will list these seven types of searches, but will discuss only two in full detail. As part of the discussion we will show what the rationale is for allowing warrantless searches, and if those reasons are persuasive or not. We will further discuss whether or not Probable Cause must exist in order to obtain a search warrant.

Discussion of Search Warrants and Probable Cause

Let’s begin with the definition of a search warrant. A search warrant is a judicial document that authorizes police officers the right to search an individual or a place to obtain evidence for presentation in a criminal prosecution. A search warrant is given to search people and/or private property in order to seize suspected evidence in a criminal or civil case. The fourth amendment of the constitution addresses the issues of search warrants rights and was designed to protect the rights of individuals from unlawful search and seizures. Search warrant laws indicate when a warrant is and is not required to search an individual and/or the property of an individual. The police officers who are wanting to do a search must obtain a search warrant by submitting affidavits and other evidence to a judge or magistrate to establish probable cause in order to believe a search will produce evidence related to a crime. Probable Cause is a level of reasonable belief that a crime has been or will be committed.

A search warrant is typically used when it intrudes on an individual’s privacy or private property. A place or individual is considered to be private when that privacy is reasonably expected...

References: The constitution of the United States of America; fourth Amendment
Law Library Managing Editor, Ken LaMance, Attorney at Law--http://www.criminal-law- lawyer-source.com/terms/search-warrant.html
Civics Library Of The Missouri Bar/ Search and Seizures
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