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Attorneys David Parry, Matthew Kindel and Curtis Crider

Did Police Have Probable Cause When They Searched Your Property?

An arrest warrant is a document authorized by a judge or magistrate that allows a police officer to arrest the person or persons named. If you’ve been subject to a search you don’t believe was legal, meet with a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer at Bauer, Crider, Kindel and Parry today. We have worked with countless people across the St. Petersburg area on this very issue, ever since our firm was started back in 1989. Since then, we have diligently represented individuals in local, state and federal courts, standing by our clients and doing everything we can to fight for their constitutional rights.

An Overview of Arrest Warrants

Typically, a warrant includes information regarding the crime for which the warrant was issued and any restrictions regarding when or how the suspect can be arrested. Some warrants also include the set bail amount if the suspect is able to post bail after arrest. Once a judge or magistrate signs the warrant, it is considered valid and the arrest can take place. An arrest warrant does not expire — it lasts until the suspect is arrested or dies or until the court decides to cancel it.

If a police officer shows up at your home with a valid arrest warrant, you are not legally allowed to refuse arrest. While it is not required for the officer to read you your Miranda rights to arrest you, the rights must be read to you before any questioning is conducted. If a police officer attempts to question you before telling you your rights, you are not required to answer and should tell the officer that you are claiming your right to remain silent or would like to talk to a Clearwater criminal defense attorney.

What Constitutes Probable Cause?

An officer must show probable cause to obtain an arrest warrant. In some situations, however, a police officer can still conduct searches or arrests without a warrant if there is probable cause. While the Fourth Amendment doesn’t provide an exact definition of probable cause, it generally involves providing proof of circumstances that indicate a crime.

According to Florida criminal laws, arrests can be carried out without a warrant in several situations, including the following:

  • The person has committed a felony or misdemeanor or violated an ordinance in front of an officer
  • A felony is being or has been committed and the officer reasonably believes a suspect to be responsible
  • There is probable cause to believe the suspect has committed domestic violence, child abuse, battery or criminal mischief or violated a safety zone

Learn More by Working with a Respected Criminal Defense Lawyer

Do you have more questions about warrants and your constitutional protections? Speak with a skilled Clearwater criminal defense attorney at Bauer, Crider, Kindel and Parry. We offer free initial consultations, so give us a call today.