Good Faith Exception

Decent Essays

Police officers, like the citizens they protect, can make mistakes. I do not believe that police officers should be held liable for acting in good faith. According to the United States Supreme Court, per Brinegar v. United States, “because many situations which confront officers in the course of executing their duties are more or less ambiguous, room must be allowed for some mistakes on their part. But the mistakes must be those of reasonable men, acting on facts leading sensibly leading to their conclusions of probability.” (PoliceMag, 2007). The Fourth Amendment protects the citizens of the United States from unreasonable searches and seizures. (U.S. Const. amend. IV). Over the course of history, the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of protecting the police officers from any liability. My focus will be on the good-faith exception and the exigent circumstance.
The Good-Faith Exception
First, the good-faith exception protects law enforcement officers who had reasonable intentions, but made mistakes with their actions. The Supreme Court first introduced the good-faith exception in United States v. Leon. The Court maintained that the exclusionary rule is not relevant in situation when police officers act with reasonable dependence on a search warrant that later proves to be invalid. …show more content…

Exigent circumstances refer to positions that require instant action that allows people to evade usual procedures. There are times when a police officer can act to make an arrest, seizure, or search for which probably cause exists. Exigent circumstances excuse noncompliance when: a person’s life is or public safety is threatened, suspect(s) escape is imminent, or evidence is about to be removed or destroyed. (U.S.Legal, n.d.). Examples of these situations include: a robbery in progress, sounds of shot being fired, or a homicide occurring at a scene of the

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