Support the Guide on Patron!

Be sure to share your comments in the Class Participation section below -- that's the best part! Also, you can use the arrows on your keyboard to flip through pages quickly.

Use this link to buy the books, and a portion of the proceeds goes to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Join the conversation!
There are now 16 comments... what are your thoughts?
  1. Out of curiosity, despite not -feeling- free to leave while a search warrant is being executed, would you actually be? Seems like a good chance to get a head start…

      • Depends on your definition of “free.” One would certainly be “physically capable” of running away even when several guns are pointed at you, though the outcome if you do, and your chances of actually getting away are not in your favor- unless you’re a ninja.

        Technically, if it’s a “search warrant” only, and not one granting “seizure” of the person, or the listed person to seize is not you, then I can’t think of any reason why the police would be allowed to lawfully detain you further. Though whether they do or not regardless of such authority, is another question altogether.

        I do wonder however, what the outcome would be if you had some lengthy legal boilerplate that those that appear on websites, noticed on your door before it was blown in…

        • I suspect their argument would be “they were around the private* areas named in the search warrant, we have a reasonable suspicion they are involved in the criminal activity we’re investigating.

          * If they search a Chinese restaurant looking for evidence of money laundering, the diners will be in the public areas.

        • The police are always allowed to reasonably detain people inside a location while they’re executing a search warrant. There are 3 main reasons for this: (1) To ensure officer safety, (2) To make sure people don’t skedaddle with evidence (or destroy it), and (3) To make the search go smoothly and with as little incident as possible.

          It’s very common for roommates or coworkers to be detained during a warrant. And a well-trained officer will always question them during the search — hoping to get a statement that incriminates their target, and also to prevent the witness from coming up with an exculpatory story down the road.

          • Yeah, now that you mention it I do recall some semblance of that illustrated earlier on.

            I’m still curious about what they would do if confronted with legal boilerplate on the door they’re knocking at.

                • Nope. Contract law has nothing to do with what a police officer may or may not do. You can’t just say “by entering these premises you agree not to detain anyone within.” You’re getting close to the “disinformation” modding threshold again.

                  • Oh, so thats why my posts kept disappearing…
                    Anyway,if that’s the casethen could someone please explain to me why contrat law can not prevail over private actions?
                    Isn’t a contract exactly what a plea deal is?

                    • Contract law applies to contracts. A plea bargain is one kind of contract, albeit with other rules in criminal procedure law that also control. And it’s not a private action. We’ll cover that in more detail in advanced crim pro, when we’re focusing on what happens after a case has commenced in court.

                      Police execution of a search warrant isn’t a private action, either. I’m sorry that you’re not seeing the difference, though I’m starting to suspect you do and are just pushing an agenda rather than seeking clarification.

  2. KW says

    You left off (4) so the owner / possessor of the evidence (such as a dead body) won’t skedaddle.

  3. Librarian says

    The only agenda I have, outside of learning for myself all the ins and outs, in complete and impenetrable detail, is to encourage people to read/reference law dictionaries, rather than believe everything authority figures tell them laws say. They can draw their own conclusions from the facts presented therein, or do further research from the court cases referenced thereat. I find Mr. John Bouvier’s Law Dictionary is a fine place to start, however, and my personal favorite, because it’s not too long, and specifically adapted to the Laws and Constitution of the United States, rather than sharing from England, and because without a knowledge of the history, one can not understand the present (which I’m sure you would find agreeable in principle). Additionally, the insight I got from reading portions of it were quite eye-opening. It can also be found online for free.

    One could also say I enjoy playing devil’s advocate and poking holes in things, which perspective is just as necessary (IMO) when it comes to learning and understanding things, as the officially presented view, since blanket absorption of knowledge is not critical thinking.

    • No offense meant, but I think you a a fine example of why reading material without the training to understand it is a great way to become horrendously misinformed.

      I’ve seen plenty of people who think that reading a few textbooks puts them on a level with actual scientists, and they all end up making huge fools of themselves, and the same would seem to apply to the law. It really isn’t hard to tell the difference between someone trying to sound smart and someone who actually knows what they’re talking about. For starters, when someone knowledgeable is contradicted, they don’t just say “no, I’m right” and restate their position, they explain why the other guy is wrong. Big difference.

  4. FlatCoke says

    I don’t get this. So at a traffic stop, I’m not free to leave. If I sped off, the police would sure be coming after my ass. So I’m under custody. Are you saying that before I’m Miranda’ed, I’m free to admit I’m doing 80 in 55 without the cops being able to use my statement against me? That doesn’t sound right…

    • No, if you admit speeding during a traffic stop, they can still use that admission to prove you were speeding. They just don’t have to mirandize you first.

      At a traffic stop, you’re not “in custody” for Miranda purposes — so you’re not “protected” by the Miranda rule. The cops don’t have to read you your rights first, and anything you say can still be used against you.

      You can choose not to answer any questions, but unless you go out of your way to explain that you’re doing so because you’re invoking your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent, your silence itself could be used against you.

      All should be explained in the upcoming pages.

Class Participation

Your email address will not be published.

Support the Guide on Patron!