Essay on Search and Seizure

2432 Words May 4th, 2007 10 Pages
The constitution has been the back bone of the United States legal system since it was first written and signed by our founding fathers. This document has been the topic of many heat debates and has gone through many changes and interpretations throughout the years. The forth amendment of the constitution is one of the most debated amendments. This is the amendment that covers the area of search and seizure as well as privacy. The fourth amendment states, "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be …show more content…
Police now had the added job of making sure there was probable cause before a warrant would be issued. This case helped to really uphold the statements made in the forth amendment and made sure that peoples privacy was kept sacred. In the Olmstead case the governmental agencies used wiretapped to listen in on private phone conversation of the Roy Olmstead. Olmstead was eventually convicted for conspiracy to violate the National Prohibition Act by transporting and selling alcohol. This case came about around the time the microphone, telephone, and dictograph recorder were invented. With these new inventions it made it much easier for the police to listen in or eavesdrop on suspects conversations. In 1928 the reviewed case that involved evidence gained through taps on phones. This evidence at the time was found to be in violation of state law. When this case went to the Supreme Court in was found in a close 5 to 4 vote that wiretapping was found within the scope of the fourth amendment. It was stated that the fourth amendment was intended to protect items on someone's person or property. With wiretapping it was looked at in the sense that no physical trespassing had occurred. The person that was being tapped did not own the telephone service or the wires to which the communications traveled. It was also hard to prove that it was considered a seizure of any type. Since the information was gained by listening to a conversation it was not considered

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