There are four elements that all arrests should have that make them legal and one of them is intent. According to Berman (2015), an arresting officer must make their intention known to the arrestee either verbally or through action. In the process, there will be reduced conflict between the officer and the arrestee. Authority is another element of an American arrest in which the state gives an officer the authority to arrest and detain a suspect if they deem their freedom puts the rest of the society at risk. The authority is given to officers qualified and who must identify themselves before making an arrest. There are instances where the suspect might ask for identification which the officer must produce.
A third element of an arrest is subjection. Subjection occurs when the arrestee willingly or forcefully is taken to custody by an officer (Berman, 2015). Arresting a suspect might either be willingly where the suspect submits themselves to custody without resistance or where there is need for use of force. Either way, the suspect is subjected to arrest. If at any particular time a suspect is unaware of the arrest, it is unlawful and invalid (Berman, 2015). Therefore, an arresting officer must make sure the suspect has a clear understanding of the arrest. Understanding is an important aspect of an arrest as it plays an essential role in reducing the conflict between the arresting officer and the suspect.
For any search and seizure with a warrant to be legal, there are several requirements that must be considered. The first one is respecting personal privacy (Bravin, 2014). Irrespective of having a warrant, police officers must ensure their activities do not unnecessarily interfere with a suspect’s personal lives. Having a probable cause is another requirement of a search and seizure with a warrant. A probable cause indicates that an arresting officer must have cause to ask for warrant to make the search (Bravin, 2014). The requirement is based on prior investigations made by the officer that indicate the search is paramount to ensure there is a case worth considering.
The expectation of privacy from the suspect must reasonable; this requirement falls on the suspect. Since the search has a warrant, the suspect must allow the officer to conduct the searches and any seizures with a little resistance as possible (Bravin, 2014). There are instances through the search that the suspect might feel the officers abusing their right for privacy; however, they ought to allow the officers to carry out their duties. All searches must be within the provisions of the fourth amendment; this requirement focuses on the police officers and their understanding of the demands of the fourth amendment.
The plain view doctrine has various aspects which make it a legal part of the American law. The most important aspect is that the item in question must be in plain view to reduce chances of making searches (Moore, 2014). The fact the officer is operating without a warrant does not allow them to make any searches; therefore the item must be in plain view. The arresting officer must also be within an area protected by the fourth amendment. Since the fourth protects individuals from unnecessary searches on personal and private property, having an item deemed suspicious in plain view gives the officer a right to take it for further analysis and to prevent it from doing harm to the society. The requirement ensures the suspects’ constitutional rights are protected.
Once the officer notices the item; to take it as evidence they must recognize it as evidence or contraband without further searches (Moore, 2014). Recognizing the suspicious item require an officer who has had ample investigation on a case to have knowledge of the evidence and identifying it on a first sight. Through this way the officer has the ability of identifying it without searching the premises as they do not have a warrant.
There are numerous ways and methods of identifying suspects that vary from one case to the next. However, in most instances a line up is efficiently used with a witness picking out the suspect from the rest (Shaves, 2013). The officer must ensure the suspects constitutional rights are observed in the process. For instance, blind administration is used where an officer unfamiliar with the case is assigned the duty of taking the witness through the process. The method is done to reduce chances of an officer intentionally or otherwise influencing the witness. Compared to the regular lineup, this method ensures the results of the lineup are valid and are not interfered with by the officer.
Sequential line up is a situation where the witness is shown pictures of the suspects one after the other. The method prevents relative judgment where the witness might judge a person based on the close resemblance to the suspect (Cole, 2014). Good fillers is a method used in lineup where all the people used resemble the suspect to prevent them from standing out. Compared to sequential line up good fillers protects the constitutional rights of the suspects as they are treated fairly. The witness should also be informed that the suspect could or could not be in the lineup. Through this way the witness is relieved off the pressure of identifying a suspect immediately. Compared to failing to tell the witness about the availability of the suspect, this method increases the chances of an accurate identification.
America has one of the most enviable constitutional in the world as a result of its adaptation to numerous human rights. The constitution protects a suspect during trial by guarantees a fair trial in all hearings (Vinson, 2014). Irrespective of being a suspect an individual has the right to a fair trial and treatment throughout the process. Under the law the constitution guarantees equal treatment; in the process, the suspect has a right to sue any officers or make appeals to any situation they feel is unfair. The constitution also provides that a suspect has a right to a pretrial heard by a grand jury for any cases including felony (Vinson, 2014). In such an instance the suspect has the chance of having a fair trial. The constitution protects an individual from double jeopardy. Double jeopardy is a situation where a suspect is tried twice over the same crime. Unless there is an appeal, the court’s decision on a trial is final. To have a retrial other functions of the court must have probable cause and follow protocol. The American law has allowed for amendments of the constitution to ensure all aspects of human rights are protected without increasing chances of criminal activities thriving.