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Search and Seizure

Every citizen has a right to personal privacy and is protected from unreasonable government intrusion into their persons, homes, businesses, and property. This right and protection is guaranteed of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Legislation has limited and regulated when law enforcement officials can interfere with a person’s Fourth Amendment right by constructing legal safeguards that ensure that it only occurs under limited circumstances and through specific methods. If you have been arrested and charged with a crime, it is important to be familiar with your Fourth Amendment rights.

What the Fourth Amendment Protects

The term search and seizure is often referred to in conjunction with criminal law and the Fourth Amendment. Search and seizure protection applies to a law enforcement officer’s physical apprehension or a person, by way of a stop or arrest. It also extends to police searches of places and items in which an individual has a legitimate expectation of privacy. These places include:

  • Your person, clothing, luggage
  • Hotel room
  • Vehicle
  • Home
  • Place of business

How it Applies to Arrests and Evidence

The Fourth Amendment applies whenever an individual is being searched or placed under arrest. It provides safeguards against the use of evidence that was obtained illegally. This means that, in order to conduct a search or seizure, a police officer must have a valid search warrant, arrest warrant, or probable cause that an individual has committed a crime.

Speak with an Appleton Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you have been arrested and charged with a crime and believe your Fourth Amendment rights were violated, you need an aggressive defense attorney who will protect your rights. Contact the Appleton criminal defense lawyers of Hart Powell, S.C. at 1.888.565.7597 to determine the best plan for a successful defense.