The Constitution, through the Fourth Amendment, protects people from unreasonable searches and seizures by the government.
The Meaning of the Fourth Amendment Today 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.
Constitution is a carefully balanced document, designed for a strong and flexible national government but limited and fair to protect the rights of its citizens. Through the genius of this document, America has survived the bumps and bruises of more than two hundred years of its experiment with constitutional democracy.
One aspect of the Constitution, the Fourth Amendment, is of particular interest to many Americans because it protects our right to privacy vis a vis our government and sets certain standards for the conduct of police. Written originally in response to violations of privacy by an intrusive British government during colonial times, the Fourth Amendment is used today to both justify and protest various police procedures-some unknown in colonial times.
The British government had issued general warrants, known as writs of assistance, to search colonists' homes for contraband, even when no information was presented to authorities to justify a search.
Given this history, it is not surprising that the core concern of the Fourth Amendment, as summed up by Justice Felix Frankfurter, is "the security of one's privacy against arbitrary intrusion by the police. We can be certain that neither the drafters of the amendment, nor citizens in the late 18th century, anticipated how protection against "unreasonable searches and seizures" would be applied to wire taps, low-flying helicopters searching out marijuana plants, or urine tests of public school athletes, whether or not they are suspected of using drugs or alcohol.
The contemporary meaning of the Fourth Amendment continues to unfold through decisions of the U. These decisions attempt to balance the legitimate interests of law enforcement against the reasonable expectations of privacy of individual citizens.
In striking this careful balance, both the Supreme Court justices and the American public seem willing today to sacrifice some aspects of privacy in the expectation of increasing public safety.
In making this choice, some would say that we are forgetting our nation's history, while others would argue that we are protecting our collective future. There is great public debate today about search and seizure laws. A survey concluded: That's how deep the fear is.
Others see limiting police searches and seizures as protecting innocent citizens from blanket suspicion and loss of the orderly administration of justice. The following review of Fourth Amendment case law sets forth several tests by which privacy has been established, denied, or forfeited, and the social context in which those tests have been applied.
The Fourth Amendment in the Courts Over the years, courts have frequently been called upon to apply the Fourth Amendment to police conduct. While judges tend to emphasize that search and seizure decisions are decided on a case-by-case basis, a careful examination of the facts in each instance allows some principles to be discerned in the existing body of Fourth Amendment case law.
The typical Fourth Amendment case arises when a defendant in a criminal case alleges that the police government seizure of evidence has violated his or her constitutional rights.
At a pre-trial hearing, called a motion to suppress, the defendant challenges the police actions, while the state the prosecutor defends the search as reasonable and not in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
If the evidence is deemed to violate the Constitution, then the Exclusionary Rule comes into play. The Exclusionary Rule is the remedy created by the U. Supreme Court for Fourth Amendment and certain other constitutional violations.
This rule has always been controversial.Essay Instructions: I'd like a custom paper on the Fourth Amendment-search and seizure. I'd like it to contain various search and seizure rules and scenarios as well as warrant requirements, search incident to arrest, vehicle searches (including container searches), and case law supporting these rules.
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A search and seizure research paper attempts to discuss the Fourth Amendment issue of search and seizure. Topics you may want to cover in your project may briefly cover the following issues in relation to the constitution and search and seizure.
Search and Seizure: The Meaning of the Fourth Amendment Today. 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.