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The Fourth amendment requires you to have a warrant to search people. The warrant has to be supported by probable cause. Sometimes though, in emergency searches not having a warrant is legal even if there is no probable cause. A recent example is Kentucky vs. King where the police in pursuit of a suspect knocked on the door and herd noises that had led them to believe they were burning evidence. The case was turned over because there was probable cause. David Rossman a professor said that when it comes to public safety there is an exception to the 4th amendment.

New Jersey v. T.L.O

In this supreme court case T.L.O was accused of smoking in the girls bathroom. The principal went through her purse without cause or warrant violating her fourth amendment rights. When she sued in court she won, but than New Jersey came back and they went to the supreme court. there they ruled that, "the presence of rolling papers in the purse gave rise to a reasonable suspicion in the principals mind that T.L.O may have been carrying drugs." which there fore justified his search. So T.L.O lost her case the second time.

Letter to the Editor

Dear editor,

I like what you have to say about the fourth amendment. I do believe that is okay to search someones house or possessions if there is "probable cause". You mentioned the case Kentucky v king, where the police were chasing or were after a suspect who they new had drugs, and i think that it was okay of the police to go in and stop them even though they had no warrant. in many ways that case is like New Jersey v T.L.O, the principle suspected that she was smoking in the girls bathroom, and when he searched her purse due to "probable cause" he found drugs. While this may have violated her rights in someway it shouldn't excuse the fact that this girl had drugs on her and was using them on school grounds. to quote David Rossman, “when it comes to the public's safety, If they have a probable cause, they can search without a warrant when taking the time to get one either would result in the destruction of evidence or present a danger to someone,” So in certain circumstances i believe that it is okay to go into someones home if there is probable cause.


Roy Barrera & Dillon Johnson

28th Amendment Proposal

We think that we need a new a amendment in our Constitution. This Amendment should protect CHILDREN from unwarranted searches in schools. in New Jersey v T.L.O, T.L.O was smoking in the bathroom and the principle searched her purse and found drugs.Now, while she may have had drugs on her the principal didn't have the right to go through her purse. So i believe that we need a new amendment that will protect the rights of students from unwarranted searches.


"When the Police Can Search Your Home Without a Warrant." Legal News Lawyerscom. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2013.

"NEW JERSEY v. T.L.O." New Jersey v. T.L.O. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 May 2013.