Frivolous Attempts at Modifying Search Warrants and the 4th Amendment




Flood, Thomas

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Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas (LEMIT)


Since the ratification of the amendments to the United States Constitution, there have been over 11,000 attempts to make changes (Gorham, 2011). Some have passed, but the majority has not passed. This paper sheds light on some of the attempted changes, with regards to the 4th Amendment and the benefit to the criminal aspect, which also happens to hamper the abilities of law enforcement. Judges, attorneys, and professors in the criminal justice field have written numerous legal papers asserting their opinions on how to make changes to the 4th Amendment, and not one paper researched would assist law enforcement in the arrest or conviction of the suspected party. The relevancy of this paper reveals a brief insight into the rationale used by persons to attempt to justify why changes to the 4th Amendment should be approved. However, attempts at modifying law enforcement protocols, and Supreme Court decisions regarding search warrants and the 4th Amendment, should be dismissed. Search warrants and the 4th Amendment should not be modified because of the following: it provides a legal avenue to search for evidence of a crime, it would be a detriment to law enforcement, and it allows officers to view items in vehicle in plain view while conducting a traffic stop. The information revealed showed no benefit to the law enforcement or prosecutorial branch, and, in reality, each point reviewed would either add restrictions on officers or allow more avenues for prosecution of the officer for lack of oversight or not being trained by his or hers department.



Searches and seizures, United States Constitution 4th amendment