The Bill Of Rights In Action Essay — страница 4

  • Просмотров 412
  • Скачиваний 4
  • Размер файла 28
    Кб

sections of the Constitution. The changing economics and practicalities of waging war have left little for the third amendment to do. As most other amendments have become flashpoints for controversy and milestones for great communal change, the third amendment has gone its own way. The Supreme Court has never directly reviewed the meaning of this amendment. Indeed, only one court has ever tackled the meaning of the amendment, in a case decided nearly 200 years after it was ratified. Engblom v. Carey grew out of a “statewide strike of correction officers, when they were evicted from their facility-residences … and members of the National Guard were housed in their residences without their consent.” The district court initially granted summary judgment for the defendants in a

suit brought by the officers claiming a deprivation of their rights under the Third Amendment. On remand, however, the District Court held that because the officers’ third amendment rights had not been clearly established at the time of the strike, the defendants were protected from suit by a qualified immunity. The Fourth Amendment The Fourth Amendment, which protects us all from unreasonable searches and seizures by governmental entities, is one of the greatest legal protections in the history of mankind. To pass under the Fourth Amendment, detention must be ‘reasonable. ‘ Advances in law enforcement and technology have made this determination far more complex than the framers could have ever anticipated. For example, if a police officer looks through your pocket, you

have been searched. Today this includes wiretapping, testing your blood or your urine for drugs or alcohol, and DNA testing. These are all part of a person s privacy. The Fourth Amendment entails a search to be based on probable cause. That is, government investigators must have a rational belief that a crime has been committed and that evidence or fruits of the crime can be found. The question courts will ask when a citizen claims to have been unconstitutionally searched is whether that person had a reasonable expectation of privacy in the place, papers, or information that government agents have examined or taken. In order to be valid under the Fourth Amendment, a search warrant must “particularly describe the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

(The purpose of this particularity requirement is to avoid “a general, exploratory rummaging in a person’s belongings. ). An adequately particular warrant describes the items to be seized in such a manner that it leaves nothing to the discretion of the officer executing the warrant. This issue was the basis of the McSurely v. McClellan case. While preparing to move, a search warrant to seize “seditious matter or printing press or other machinery to print or circulate seditious matter” and an arrest warrant were issued on the McSurely s behalf. Not only was their house searched, but scoured as well. Everything was taken from their home, including their work papers, college exams, phone bills, tax returns, telephone books, and Mrs. McSurely’s very personal diary. The

McSurely’s were freed, but their possessions were locked up in “safekeeping” in case there was an appeal. The McSurelys felt neither local Kentucky officials nor the Senate subcommittee members had obtained their documents in a reasonable manner. They appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals, claiming their conviction was based on evidence seized in an illegal search. The Court of Appeals found that the affidavit did not support a search warrant, since the warrant was issued on hearsay. Also there was no particular description of what materials were to be seized, other than “seditious matter or printing press or other machinery to print or circulate seditious matter”. Because of the items taken from the McSurely’s home, the Court of Appeals held that this was a prime

example of a general search in violation of the Fourth Amendment. Therefore, the convictions were reversed. On November 28, 2000, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Indianapolis v. Edmond. In Edmond, the Court held that it was unconstitutional under the Fourth Amendment to set roadblocks “whose primary purpose was to detect evidence of ordinary criminal wrongdoing.” The Indianapolis checkpoint scheme at issue in Edmond allowed officers to conduct a search only by consent or based on the “appropriate quantum of particularized suspicion.” Further, the officers were required to conduct each stop in the same manner until particularized suspicion developed and then the officers could extend the search based on the suspicion. The cars were stopped in groups