Search/Arrest Warrant

Search/Arrest Warrant

The Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution provides that police officers must get a search or arrest warrant before searching or arresting a suspect. Indeed, the document, sourced from a magistrate, is legally binding and provides officers with the authority to conduct the activities. Although the document is a requirement before any search or arrest for a specific crime, there are various exceptions to the requirement. The exceptions are driven by the fact that some circumstances are emergencies and lack of urgent intervention may undermine the pursuance of justice. While there are many reasons, this article focuses on two exceptions including consent searches and automobile searches.

Police officers are allowed to conduct warrantless searches in circumstances where a person believed to have the requisite authority gives consent to the search (Woody, 2006). For instance, a vehicle owner may consent to the search of the vehicle thereby prompting the police officers to conduct the search without a search warrant. In addition, the partner to the owner of a building may give the right to a search in the building provided the officers reasonably believe that the partner lives in the building. In such cases, the rights of the individual would not be violated even if they indeed did not live in the premises.

The police can also go ahead and search a vehicle even when they do not have a search warrant. This is however restricted to scenarios where the police believe that the vehicle contains evidence of a crime or when it is likely that it may have signs of crime and contraband. This exception is based on the logic that automobiles are highly mobile and may facilitate the escape of suspects with the evidence of a crime before officers can obtain a search or arrest warrant. The areas of the vehicle to be searched are based on the type of crime being suspected by the officers.


Professionalism is a widely accepted concept among various occupations with the goal of improving service efficiency. The police department has not been left behind and professionalism began to be adopted as early as the 1950s. Part of the reason for the emergence was the need for a solution to the ineffectiveness of the force and the urge to reform the institution as a whole. The concept began to be incorporated in the force due to the incidence of tensions between the police and the community.

Over the many years, there has been a clear difference between professional officers and those of yester years. Professional police departments are much friendlier and inculcate a culture of trust in the citizens that they protect. In addition, these police departments obtain a balance by being equally intimidating thus obtaining compliance from criminals and suspects without the use of unnecessary force (Thomas, 2011). Part of maintain a professional force includes the correct wearing of uniform which is enough to ensure compliance of most of the people. Professional forces use their uniform to command respect and not instill fear in the citizens thus attaining both trust and compliance at once.

The incidence of professionalism has shown a light that illustrates the importance of leading a correct social life. The principles of police professionalism dictate that the officers lead socially upright lives outside of their jobs. This mantra is based on the fact that respect and trust are gained when the citizens view the police officers in good light. This is in contrast with the police forces of yester years that drove fear and intimidation on the citizens. Moreover, professional police forces are much more efficient than non professional ones. Efficiency is measured through the response to calls for action and has the effect of improving both trust and respect for the force.



Thomas, D. J. (2011). Professionalism in policing: An introduction. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar Cengage Learning.

Woody, R. H. (2006). Search and seizure: The Fourth Amendment for law enforcement officers. Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas.


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