Having the police show up at your front door can be a frightening experience. It’s important to know how to behave in this situation—and what your rights are. One of the most common questions posed to criminal defense attorneys is whether officers can enter the building without a warrant. This is a legal document that authorizes law enforcement to search a specified location and seize from it certain materials.
How the Fourth Amendment Protects You
Police can’t search your home without a warrant. This is outlined by the Fourth Amendment, which guarantees the right of citizens “to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.” As such, officers need written permission from the courts to search your home.
In the event that police violate the Fourth Amendment by illegally entering, searching, and seizing materials, the evidence that they gather can’t be admitted in court. However, there are instances in which police can proceed without a warrant, such as if evidence of illegal actions is visible from the doorway.
When to Call a Criminal Defense Attorney
If the police show up at your home and ask to search the premises, do not let them do so without a warrant. Remain polite but firm and avoid giving in to pressure. Even if you have done nothing wrong, it’s best to refuse a police search. Remember that it is reasonable to ask them to return with a warrant and not let them in otherwise.
Should law enforcement arrive with a warrant, ask to see the document. It should specify which parts of the home they can examine, as well as the time frame in which they are permitted to conduct the search. If police are entering your home, call a criminal defense attorney immediately.
Need a criminal defense attorney who will fight for your rights? Look to the Bellotti Law Group, PC, in Boston, MA. This top-rated law firm is known for providing clients with clear communication and aggressive representation. From drug charges to custody battles, they handle an array of cases with compassionate and discrete services. Contact the lawyers online or by calling (617) 778-1000 to schedule a consultation today.