Overview of reasonableness:

Even if based upon a warrant or authorization and probable cause, search must be conducted in a reasonable manner.

  1. Wilson v. Arkansas , 514 U.S. 927 (1995). The common law requirement that police officers “knock and announce” their presence is part of the reasonableness clause of the Fourth Amendment.
  2. United States v. Banks , 540 U.S. 31 (2003). In a case involving easily disposable illegal drugs, police were justified in breaking through an apartment door after waiting 15-20 seconds following knocking and announcing their presence. This time was sufficient for the situation to ripen into an exigency.
  3. Richards v. Wisconsin , 520 U.S. 385 (1997). Every no-knock warrant request by police must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Test for no-knock warrant is whether there is reasonable suspicion that evidence will be destroyed or there is danger to police by knocking.
    United States v. Ramirez , 523 U.S. 65 (1998). Whether or not property is damaged during warrant execution, the same test applies — reasonable suspicion.
  4. Hudson v. Michigan , 547 U.S. 586 (2006). Violation of the Fourth Amendment “knock and announce” rule, without more, will not result in suppression of evidence at trial.
  5. Depending on the circumstances, law enforcement officials may “seize” and handcuff occupants of a residence while they execute a search warrant of that residence. Muehler v. Mena , 544 U.S. 93, 125 S.Ct. 1465 (2005).
  6. L.A. County v. Rettele, 127 S.Ct. 1989 (2007). When officers execute a valid warrant and act in a reasonable manner to protect themselves from harm, however, the Fourth Amendment is not violated.
  7. United States v. Osorio , 66 M.J. 632 (A.F. Ct. Crim. App. 2008). Forensic examination of a computer based on a search warrant must not exceed the scope of the warrant. Examiners must carefully analyze the terms of the warrant and adjust their examination methodology accordingly. Inevitable discovery did not apply to facts of this case.
  • Reasonableness and Media “Ride-Alongs.” Violation of Fourth Amendment rights of homeowners for police to bring members of media or other third parties into homes during execution of warrants.
    Wilson v. Layne
    , 526 U.S. 603 (1999).
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