by Scott Smith and Ryan Walsh
You’re driving and the blue lights come on behind you. You pull over and the officer comes up to your vehicle. He immediately asks if he can search? Do you know what your rights are? The Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable searches is the subject of today’s video blog.
Hello, I’m Scott Smith. The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution prevents the government from unreasonable searches without a warrant.
Lets go back to the example we talked about in the introduction. You’re driving down the road and the blue lights come on behind you. The officer comes up to your vehicle and asks you if they can search. Are you going to let them? No.
For an officer to be justified in searching your car they must have probable cause that evidence of criminal activity will be found in your vehicle. It has to be more than just a hunch that they will find evidence of criminal activity inside. Always say no. But that doesn’t mean they can’t get probable cause to search. If you leave a bag of weed out in plain view for the officer to see, the officer has probable cause to search your car. They can also search you and your immediate area after you are placed under arrest. And if they have to impound your vehicle, they can do what’s called an inventory search of your vehicle.
Whether a search is reasonable is always up for argument. An experienced attorney can use the facts of the encounter to argue why this specific incident isn’t reasonable under the law. At the Peach State Lawyer we recommend always politely declining to allow an officer to search your home, vehicle, or belongings. A search can only hurt you, it can never help you.
If you feel like you’ve been the victim of an unlawful search, or you’ve been charged with a crime where a search was involved, call us today at 404-581-0999 for a free consultation. We’re available twenty four hours a day, seven days a week to meet with you. Thank you.