Search and Seizure
Your rights regarding illegal search and seizure are defined by the U.S. Constitution, Arizona law, and many other specific court rulings over time. Although interpreting the law regarding search and seizure can be a complex task and has been at the center of many complicated felony drug cases, what it boils down to is that officers cannot search you without a probable cause for the search. And, if the police search you illegally, that evidence cannot be used in court against you. For the most part, officers must obtain a warrant to legally search you, your car, or your home and use any evidence they find against you. If you’ve been charged with a felony drug crime after the police searched you without a warrant, speak with a Phoenix criminal attorney as soon as possible about your case.
However, there are some situations in which the police may be able to legally search you, your home, or your car without a warrant, including:
- Consent. If you willingly give consent for the search, then officers do not need a warrant or probable cause to search.
- Plain view. If an officer sees a potentially illegal item in plain view, then they can seize that item and use it as evidence against you.
- Incident to arrest. If you have been arrested and there is probable cause that you committed a crime, the officer may search you without a warrant.
- Exigent circumstances. If there is an emergency situation or an immediate threat to public safety, then officers may be able to enter a building or search without a warrant.
If you have been charged with felony drug possession in Arizona or another drug-related crime after a police search, speak with a skilled Phoenix criminal lawyer as soon as possible about your rights. If you were searched illegally in Arizona, then you may be able to avoid conviction or your case may be dismissed entirely with a smart defense. Give one of our experienced Phoenix drug lawyers a call today at 1-888-929-5292 and learn more about your rights and options after an arrest.
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