Skip to comments.Supreme Court Rules 8-1 Citizens Have No Protection Against 4th Amendment Violations by Police
Posted on 12/26/2014 7:31:29 PM PST by TurboZamboni
In a blow to the constitutional rights of citizens, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 8-1 in Heien v. State of North Carolina that police officers are permitted to violate American citizens' Fourth Amendment rights if the violation results from a "reasonable" mistake about the law on the part of police. Acting contrary to the venerable principle that "ignorance of the law is no excuse," the Court ruled that evidence obtained by police during a traffic stop that was not legally justified can be used to prosecute the person if police were reasonably mistaken that the person had violated the law. The Rutherford Institute had asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hold law enforcement officials accountable to knowing and abiding by the rule of law. Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the Court's lone dissenter, warned that the court's ruling "means further eroding the Fourth Amendment's protection of civil liberties in a context where that protection has already been worn down."
"By refusing to hold police accountable to knowing and abiding by the rule of law, the Supreme Court has given government officials a green light to routinely violate the law," said John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute and author of the award-winning book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State. "This case may have started out with an improper traffic stop, but where it will endgiven the turbulence of our age, with its police overreach, military training drills on American soil, domestic surveillance, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture, wrongful convictions, and corporate corruptionis not hard to predict. This ruling is what I would call a one-way, nonrefundable ticket to the police state."
(Excerpt) Read more at freedomoutpost.com ...
So what this means is that a cop has no reason to even study the law.
If you don’t like the guy’s looks, just search him, arrest him and let the court figure it out.
What ever happened to the fruit of the poisonous tree?
Interesting, the vote breakdown is perplexing.
So when can we start rifling through the judges bank accounts and homes?
“Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the Court’s lone dissenter....”
Wow. This is truly messed up.
It’s delicious. So says the USSC.
Only citizens get in trouble for not knowing the law. The cops and the elite can do as they please.
No, it does not.
At the time of the stop, there was no reason to believe only one working light was required. AFTER THE STOP, a court case was decided by a lower court that interpreted the law to mean only one light was required. Another passage in the same law strongly indicates the lower court decided incorrectly. The NC Supreme Court was not asked to rule on the validity of the lower court’s interpretation, so they did not.
In any case, it was completely & 100% reasonable for a cop to interpret NC law as requiring all the lights to work AT THE TIME THE INCIDENT TOOK PLACE. No cop can be required to outguess what a future court ruling might decide.
Further, there is no constitutional right to not be stopped. A cop can stop you for any reason and not violate your rights. He has not arrested you, nor has the state punished you in any way. There is no constitutional right to not be pulled over. There never has been.
Once you have been pulled over, if you then give the police permission to search your car, the search is not illegal or unconstitutional. Why? Because you gave permission.
There are going to be a lot of Freepers happy about that ... the ones who think that crooks should have no constitutional rights ... :-) ...
Actually, the vote makes perfect sense. 8 justices knew what they were doing. The Wise Latina is an idiot. See post 9.
The full decision can be read here:
Someone forgot to water it with blood of tyrants?
The “good faith” exception to search has already been in existence for years. This is nothing new.
Great post. Probable.
This is going to end badly.
When you get over the fence, past the dogs, security system, and armed guard you’re paying for.
Somebody lost the US Constitution? Seems it has been lost, after all nobody seems to be able to find it.
― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
I love threads like this. FReepers fly off the handle based upon what they read in a blog, and never bother to read the opinion in the first place.
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