Do They Really Need a Warrant?

Some groups are up in arms (pardon the pun) because the Boston police want to search homes for guns without a warrant. On the surface this sounds like a bad thing and if this were the whole truth it would be. The article goes on to describe that police want to search homes without a warrant after asking permission from the homeowner. If a police officer asks if he may search your home and you say yes he does not need a warrant. You are free to say no.

I will admit that the plan to search children’s bedrooms has flaws. The idea is that parents are so fed up and afraid of the gun violence that they will allow the searches and a warrant will not need to be obtained. In order to get a warrant the police would need probable cause, if they ask the homeowner and are allowed to search they do not need the warrant or probable cause. I would not allow the police to search my home without a warrant. I have nothing to hide but I will not give them access without probable cause and they need that to get a warrant. What will happen to the homeowner if they have other illegal items? Suppose they illegally copy DVDs and they are in the open? A warrant would specifically state what is to be searched and what they may look for. If the homeowner lets them in they can arrest for anything they find. I don’t condone illegal activity but I do not condone bypassing the rights people have. Of course, if someone is not bright enough to know his rights or to exercise them, perhaps he gets what he deserves. In any event, using fear to search a house is not a good way to conduct business.

The bigger issue here is why are there so many illegal guns in Boston and why are there so many shooting? Massachusetts has very tough gun control laws and the gun grabbers all tell us that the way to get guns off the streets by having these kinds of laws. If they are correct then there should be very few guns and very little gun violence. Perhaps there is some realization that criminals do not obey the law. As Thomas Jefferson noted in his Commonplace Book (quoting Cesare Beccaria), ‘Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.’ [Federalist Patriot]

So how do so many guns end up in a state or a city in that state when the gun control laws are so strict that people get jail time for having BB guns? Obviously those who have little or no regard for the rule of law will not follow the law.

There are two issues here. Should the police be allowed to search without a warrant? No, unless of course the homeowner gives permission and only a fool would do that. Secondly, why is there a problem if gun control laws really work?

The founders recognized that we had an inherent right to carry arms in order to defend ourselves against invaders, the lawless and a tyrannical government. This is undeniable and clearly explained in their writings on the issue. We are also protected against unlawful search and seizure so it would be in the best interest of Boston homeowners to just say no…

Big Dog



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27 Responses to “Do They Really Need a Warrant?”

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  8. Bushwack says:

    I think that’s a good point about other illegal items, but I have a problem with this: “unless of course the homeowner gives permission and only a fool would do that.”

    I disagree, I think a responsible parent uses all tools at their disposal to raise their children right, and sometimes in today’s world both parents work, and the kids have entirely too much free time, depending on location and surroundings sometimes kids get started down a terrible path, which could lead to mindless shootings (columbine) I think if a responsible parent has tried everything, and is still not sure if the kid is making poor choices, allowing LE to look into his life a little might prevent trouble down the road.

    Now, if your kid is an honor student, tutors retards in their spare time and is in the church choir, and if a cop showed up asking to see his room I’d tell em to F.O too…

  9. Robert says:

    WTF BD? The name defaults to King Groundhog? LMAO

  10. Big Dog says:

    BW, unless the cops have probable cause they do not belong in your house. Suppose you had your guns out cleaning them and they decided that they needed to confiscate them because you had them out and are a nuisance, or if a person’s bong was out and they forgot. If the cops see it they can act on it because it was in the open and you invited them in. I don’t condone drug use but the people have rights.

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  12. Robert says:

    What constitutes probable cause BD? That’s why I said I would question them and my kid if they showed up on my doorstep… Like I said, I would allow it if I had doubts as to my kids answers. And if they came in to search, I would specify what and where they searched, It is my discretion and I have the right to say what room.

    I also have the right to shove a kilo of coke and an arsenal of weapons into a closet and mark it as off limits without a warrant…I think the presumtion of the cops wanting to look all over your house because they are in the door is flawed… I think the police would be there under a probable cause, they had a reason to pick your house, weather it was valid or not is up for evidence to filter out.

    Here in Cali, if a tagger is caught, they can fine the parents, and they can and will ask the parents for permission to look at the kids room. if it’s not granted they will get a warrant.
    Kids write things on their bedroom walls, in note books and on junk in their backyards, if the cops can match that with hundreds of tags in the city the fines can be up to 50K and the DA has placed liens on the home.

    I think there is room for a compromise in this search thing. I believe we need to start getting the laws to work for the victims rather than the criminals, even if it’s my own blood…

    Just think, what if the kids that shot up Columbine, were suspected of something and the cops went to their home and were granted access to their room, perhaps it could have saved lives…. Just one example on the other side of your view.

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  14. Ogre says:

    In this society, I think you’re crazy to ever allow police in your house without a warrant. There are so many laws on the book right now, NO ONE can possibly know if they’re breaking any. And if the police are invited into your house, they will, nearly without exception, arrest you if they find anything that’s illegal in their mind.

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  18. Robert says:

    I don’t believe that’s accurate BD, I honestly believe that a city police officer or Detective that shows up at your door to check you kids room has a reason for it. I think the premise that if you let them in they will arbitrarily search everywhere and arrest you for “other” laws broke is wrong.

    Now if Homeland Security knocks, ABSOLUTELY say Hell No. or the IRS CIA or FBI…but local law enforcement is a different animal, they are looking for something that led them to your home and if it saves some lives or catches a “Felonious” miscreant than so be it.

    I am not saying you should open your door in all cases, but I think to determine the answer should be NO in ALL circumstances is a very narrow opinion.

    Like I said in the previous comment, think Columbine…. or any of the other kid involved shootings… there has got to be a way to protect future victims. Since guns in the hands of students appears to not have a chance in hell, I think an OK by the parents should be good enough, and I think if the parent says no, and something happens, they should be charged as accessories to what ever happened.

  19. Robert says:

    Robert,

    I would like to think you are correct, but unfortunately, I do not think so. Local Law Enforcement is generally honest, and very cognizent of people’s rights, but all you need is one “Hot Dog” to take you down the road you won’t wish to go. I have seen these guys “stack” charges on people, for any number of reasons, i.e. the hacked the officer off, or the guy needs some stats for promotion purposes, or he just enjoys making other people miserable, etc. It is unfortunate but you cannot rely on the magnanimity and possible good will, ESPECIALLY OF GOVERNMENT. There are also a few who will manufacture evidence if needed to make an arrest. If he isn’t inside, he cannot plant anything.
    Further, as a parent, anyone SHOULD be aware of what his child is doing in his home. I damn sure was when my kids were growing up, I wasn’t “nosy”, and prowled their things, but I made sure I knew what was going on.
    I am a retired LE officer, and I can assure you no one will enter my home without a warrant, and better have damn good probable cause, or I will find myself a fine lawyer and own that jurisdiction.

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  21. Robert says:

    I am not sure who wrote the above comment, but it wasn’t me… LOL

    Well like I said I think LE should have the right to request entry without a warrant, I think if a parent grants it, they should limit the search and be present at all times. I also think if it doesn’t involve a Felony, No entry should be granted. I also think the “Request” is the underlying issue, I think the “Request” can be denied and should be, more than it is allowed. But; I also believe if it is denied and lives are lost that possibly could have been saved, we will have to look back and say “IF ONLY they had been granted entry.”

    Point being that the circumstance should dictate how the request is handled.

    What if your kid was overheard talking about building a bomb and blowing up a day care center… Cops show up and you deny entry, the act occurs between warrant issue and bombing….I mean we would crucify the police, the law that allowed it and we would be adamant that the law be changed….

    Like I said, a request should be allowed, it should be admissible in court if it leads to something, if it doesn’t then no harm no foul.
    I also think parents should be held responsible for their actions if the request for entry was denied, and lives were lost that could have been saved.

  22. Ranando says:

    It is up to the parents to check their kid’s room for guns, not the Police.

  23. Robert says:

    Ranando, Yep I agree, but look at youth crime these days, we are in a different world and things need to change, starting with tougher laws for Felony convicted youths, and Parent responsibility including Felony accessory charges.

    Good parents will have no issue with the police knocking on the door, if they do it will be VERY RARE.
    The problem is those parents that have kids because the gubmint pays them for it, and THOSE are the ones that will have the most dealings with law enforcement.

    We bitch and moan that something should be done to prevent murders rapes and robberies, yet we have so many liberal judges that a warrant is a lot tougher to get than it should be in most cases.
    So what is the answer?
    I think this is a step in the right direction personally, it gives the homeowner the right to allow or deny a request, and Like I said, if a crime occurs after that ALL parties should be charged.

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