AJ 4 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Arrest Warrant, Search Warrant, Misdemeanor
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Police and the Rule of Law continued
Defining An Arrest
● An arrest is the most common seizure. Private citizens also have the right to make an
Arrest: occurs when a police officer takes a person into custody or deprives a person of freedom
for having allegedly committed a criminal offense.
● A legal arrest includes: the officer’s belief that sufficient legal evidence (probable cause)
exists that a crime is being or has been committed and intends to restrain the suspect,
officer deprives the individual of freedom, and the suspect believes that he is in the
custody of the police and cannot leave, he has lost his liberty.
Search Warrants And Arrest Warrants
Search warrant: an order, issued by a judge, directing officers to conduct a search of specified
premises for specified objects.
Arrest warrant: an order, issued by a judge, directing officers to arrest a particular individual.
● The 4th doesn’t necessitate warrants for all searches and arrest but in some these
situations they are necessary:
o Arrest and searches in private homes or on specific types of private property
o Arrests for minor offense committed out of view of the arresting officer
In-presence requirement: a police officer cannot arrest someone for a misdemeanor unless the
officer sees the crime occur. To make an arrest for a crime the officer did not witness an arrest
warrant must be obtained.
Probable cause: the evidentiary criterion necessary to sustain an arrest or the issuance of an arrest
or warrant: a set of facts, information, circumstances, or conditions that would lead a reasonable
person to believe that an offense was committed and that the accused committed that offense.
● To establish probable cause an officer must provide the judge with factual information in
the form of written affidavits, which report either their own observations or those of
private citizens or police undercover informants. Cannot be based on beliefs or
suspicions. Officer must show how they obtained the information and provide evidence
of its reliability.
● Sources of information include: