No Probable Cause, No Search
Video Transcript: Can the police stop someone and search them without a good reason? My name is Jason Sorensen. I’m an Oklahoma attorney at Wirth Law Office.
Today, we’re going to be talking about whether people can be stopped by the police randomly or without good reason and have that law enforcement officer search them. The simple answer is no. They can’t do it without good reason.
The reason that the police actually need to be able to just search somebody is probable cause. Probable cause is a reasonable belief based on the circumstances that a crime has been committed. A reasonable person would have to believe that a crime has been committed by that person.
If the police have that reasonable belief, then they can stop somebody and search somebody. However, if they don’t have that reasonable belief, if that probable cause was not there and the police search a defendant anyway and they find something, then that evidence that they find will be inadmissible in court.
It’s very important that the police have probable cause before conducting any searches like that. Because if they don’t, then it’s going to be fruit from a poisonous tree and it won’t be able to be used in court against the defendant. This is just general information.
If you have more questions about criminal law, visit makelaweasy.com or if you need help with a criminal case, give us a call at Wirth Law Office to speak with a Tulsa criminal defense lawyer.