What Is a Search and What Is a Seizure of a Person? Our Attorneys in Monroe NC Answer

Search and seizure issues are complex Constitutional questions that weigh and balance two strong, competing interests; the right of the individual to be safe and secure in their person and property versus the government’s legitimate interest in detecting and preventing crime.

What Constitutes a Search

Not every interaction between the government and a person is considered a “search” for Constitutional purposes. An intrusion may be a search if:

  • The person has a reasonable expectation of privacy in the object searched, and
  • That expectation is legally reasonable

Consequently, it is not considered a search if, for example, the police approach you on the street and ask questions, shine a flashlight into a car window or look through an open window.

What Constitutes Seizure of a Person

Seizure of a person involves the concept of whether under the circumstances of the encounter between you and a police officer, a reasonable person would have thought he or she was free to terminate the encounter and leave. Some examples of where courts have found a seizure of a person include:

  • The display of a weapon by an officer
  • The presence of several officers
  • The touching of a person by an officer
  • A threatening or loud tone of voice by an officer

Contact Search and Seizure Attorneys in Monroe NC for Legal Advice

The police have a great deal of power, but it is not without limits. Understand and protect your rights. Call the Khan Law Offices, search and seizure attorneys in Monroe NC, at 704-774-6426.

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