Can I be searched without a warrant?
Upon arrest, an officer may search you, without a warrant, for weapons, evidence, or illegal or stolen goods. Strip searches should not be conducted for offenses that do not involve weapons, drugs, or violence unless police reasonably suspect you are concealing a weapon or illegal goods, and they have authorization to conduct a strip search from the supervising officer on duty. If you are booked and jailed, you may undergo a full body search, including body cavities.
Under certain circumstances, such as law enforcement preventing imminent destruction of evidence, your home maybe searched without your consent or a warrant. If you are taken into custody in your home, without a warrant, an officer can search only the limited area within your reach. Other rooms and even other parts of the same room are off limits, unless the officer believes that other suspects are hiding in other rooms. While searching your home, an officer may seize any evidence of criminal activity in plain sight.
Your car, including the trunk, may be searched without your consent or a warrant if law enforcement has good reason to believe it contains illegal or stolen goods or evidence. If the police stop your car for any legal reason, such as a broken taillight, they may seize as evidence any illegal goods in plain sight.
In the event of an illegal search, the court may exclude any illegally seized evidence, only upon a motion to suppress by you or your defense attorney. A decision to suppress illegally seized evidence does not necessarily mean that the case against you will be dropped.
Attorney Stephen G. Cline has been a practicing San Diego criminal defense attorney for 20 years. His reputation and experience will be the key to the aggressive defense of your San Diego arrest. Call today at (619) 235-5638 to review your specific case!