Greenland, NH asked in Criminal Law and Constitutional Law for Maine

Q: I believe my 4th amendment rights were violated as a result of an unlawful search & seizure

Police responded to a civil complaint re: an aggressive dog...they left complainant’s property, entered mine & saw no dog, nor person or vehicle (I was out with said dog(s). Officers then approached domicile & claimed to see ‘evidence of firearms in plain view’...one officer was the arresting officer in a previous incident involving myself & therefore was privy to my status as ‘temporary prohibited person’, hence he assessed said ‘evidence’ as contraband, yet did not seize or photograph offending item(s). After appr. four hours, said officers returned with two more SWAT equipped officers, approached my parked vehicle in my driveway where I was resting, and forcibly removed me, placing me under arrest with no Mirandization. Was forcibly dragged INTO my domicile where all four officers conducted a random ransack style search and did recover firearms. There were no firearms ‘in plain sight’ other than replicas & air rifles, hence I believe the whole search invalid...

1 Lawyer Answer
Hunter J Tzovarras
Hunter J Tzovarras
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Bangor, ME
  • Licensed in Maine

A: Any search of the home would require a search warrant supported by probable cause, unless you provided consent to search the home. There may also be a 4th Amendment issue as to whether the police could enter your property to be in the location of where they claim they saw the firearm. Law enforcement are required to provide you Miranda warnings if you're placed under arrest and subject to questioning. If you were arrested and questioned without first waiving your Miranda rights anything you said to law enforcement could be suppressed.

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