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Police Searches:
United States v. Ramirez, Herman

Appealed From: U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit
Subjects: Fourth Amendment; No-Knock Entries/Searches

Argued: Jan. 13, 1998

Decided: March 4, 1998
Vote: 9-0

At Issue: Whether police officers should be required to have more specific evidence that they or others are in danger to justify a no-knock entry that damages a door or window.

Decision: By a unanimous decision, the justices ruled that police officers do not have to adhere to a higher standard of evidence when the no-knock entry damages property. The important fact in a no-knock entry, the justices decided, is whether policy have a reasonable suspicion that knocking before entering would affect their investigation of the crime. Whether property is damaged is not the dependent factor.

Read the full text of the United States v. Ramirez decision at the Findlaw Internet Legal Resources Web site. The full text of the lower court decision is also available there, as is the Fourth Amendment.

Sources: The Washington Post, Supreme Court, The United States Law Week (a Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. publication)

© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company

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