Persuasive Essay On The Fourth Amendment

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One of the most important amendments in the United States Constitution and which is also part of the Bill of Rights is the Fourth amendment. The Fourth Amendment protects people from being searched or arrested by police officers or any law enforcement without a reason. An officer may confront you and ask to search your house but if they don’t have a search warrant, they cannot legally pursue it without good reason and permission from a judge. Now what happens when a person is being arrested? Does the police or any law enforcement need a search warrant? The answer to that question would have to be no. This is where “Search incident to arrest” comes into play. Search incident to arrest (SITA), which could also be called the Chimel rule, is a …show more content…

One of the major court decisions for the “Search Incident to Arrest” was Gant vs. Arizona. Rodney Gant was arrested for driving with a suspended driving license. When the police officers arrested him and had him hand cuffed in the back seat of the police car, they then did a search on his vehicle. The police then didn’t have a reason to think there were illegal things in his car just from driving with a suspended license. The search warrant to arrest states that a police officer may conduct a warrantless search if there are any suspensions found within the area. In Gant versus Arizona this was not the case. The police officer had no reason to search Rodney’s car just because he had a suspended drivers license. As the police officer was searching the car he found cocaine in a jacket pocket in the back seat. A previous case ruling such as New York versus Belton, they had made the bright-line rule. The bright-line says that a police can search the compartment on the passenger side of a vehicle or any containers that are within the reach or “grabbing area” of the arrestee. Later over the years there was another court casing, Thornton versus United States. During the courts ruling they had changed the Belton rule again. It now said that the police cannot pursue a warrantless search if the arrestee is secured and locked up in a police car and has no access to the inside of the vehicle. After hearing the revised rule, the court did not give up. In the final courts ruling, a police can still perform a warrantless search only if there is any reason to believe there is other crime related evidence in the vehicle. Since the time of Gants arrest the police had no suspicions to conduct a warrantless search because of a suspended driving license, Gant

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that the fourth amendment protects people from being searched or arrested by police or any law enforcement without a reason.
  • Explains the supreme court's decision on the "search incident to arrest" in gant vs. arizona, where the police had no reason to search rodney’s car because he had a suspended driving license.
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