All persons under the United States Constitution are guaranteed certain rights. That being said, many people wonder whether they have any rights during a search and seizure. Keep reading to learn your rights during search and seizure. In addition, discover how our seasoned Nassau County Criminal Defense Attorneys can protect your constitutional rights.
Do I have rights during search and seizure?
While individuals in the U.S. have the right to a certain level of protection from government intervention, privacy is restricted. When justified, law enforcement officers have the right to search an individual’s property to look for and seize evidence they suspect the individual possesses. However, the key word here is when law enforcement officers are justified. Law enforcement officers have certain legal restrictions on searches and seizures. Under the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, law enforcement officers only have the authority to engage in reasonable searches. This means the officer must have obtained a warrant from a judge to execute the search or the search qualified for a warrantless search. Therefore, the only way an officer can conduct a reasonable search is with a search warrant.
It is critical to note that a judge will not just sign off on a warrant unless the officer demonstrates that they have adequate reason to believe that evidence of a crime will be found in the possession of a particular person or found in a specific place. This is known as probable cause. Law enforcement officers cannot search or seize evidence without probable cause. If they fail to execute a reasonable search, they violate your constitutional rights and any evidence that was acquired cannot be used against you. This is because the evidence was obtained through an unlawful search and seizure. That being said, if you believe that the evidence the prosecution is relying on to convict you was illegally obtained through an unreasonable search and seizure, you should inform your attorney.
How can a motion to suppress evidence benefit my case?
An experienced attorney can file a motion to suppress evidence. With this motion, the judge can exclude certain evidence from being used by the prosecution. This is often the case when evidence was obtained through an unlawful search or seizure. If the prosecution relied on evidence obtained through an unlawful search or seizure, having this evidence thrown out can lead to reduced or dismissed charges as they may not have enough evidence to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Are you facing criminal charges? If you believe your rights have been violated through an unlawful search and seizure, contact a skilled Nassau County criminal defense attorney who can help you protect your constitutional rights. Our trusted team is prepared to fight on your behalf today to achieve the best outcome.