Q: How do I know if the search warrant was valid, legal, and legidimate?
This is a legal question best answered by an attorney. If you would like challenge a search warrant, first your attorney needs to obtain the search warrant and the police reports regarding the warrant. Sometimes the police ask to keep parts of the warrant under seal, but it is normally accessible through the court. Once you have the warrant, your attorney can analyze whether it comported with the requirements for a valid warrant. The primary case on this issue is U.S. V. Leon, but there have been many since that help define the standards. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Leon
The key issues are: did the warrant accurately describe the person or things to be seized and did the search exceed the scope of the warrant (was it the correct address, did the police search rooms not within the warrant, etc.) 2) was it issued by a valid magistrate 3)did the officer knowingly lie in the affidavit for the warrant 4) was the warrant stale, meaning it was executed too long after it was signed 5) was there probable cause for the issuance of the warrant 6) was the evidence used for the warrant illegally seized?
Even if these issues exist, there are some exceptions where the search is still not suppressed. But, at least having one of these errors is a start.
Best of luck.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.