Did the Police Arrest Me with No Probable Cause?
Being arrested and charged with a crime is frightening. Finding out after the fact that the police may have arrested you illegally is doubly upsetting. If you believe you were arrested without probable cause or a warrant, here’s what you need to know — and what to do next.
False Arrests Explained
A wrongful arrest is defined as being taken into police custody without probable cause or an arrest warrant that a judge issued against you. Probable cause means that a law enforcement officer has seen enough evidence to reasonably conclude that a crime has occurred. This may be with or without a formal search of your property. If the police do not have probable cause before an arrest, it may be wrongful.
How the 4th Amendment Plays a Role
The Constitution’s 4th Amendment offers legal protection against false arrest. The document states that persons have the “right 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 searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
Factors of a Wrongful Arrest
Generally, there are three requirements needed to establish that a false arrest occurred:
- You were restrained by a police officer using force or the officer’s own authority.
- You weren’t allowed to go because the law enforcement officer prevented you from doing so, either by physically preventing you from leaving (e.g. handcuffing you) or telling you that you were not free to go.
- The arresting officer intentionally took you into custody and knew that there was no probable cause for your arrest.
You may have more difficulty winning a wrongful arrest case if you were asked to go with the police officer and agreed to do so.
How a False Arrest May Potentially Impact the Charges Against You
If you were taken into police custody without cause, you may potentially be able to have the charges against you thrown out. Essentially, this is when the court determines that they can no longer legally charge you with the crime you are accused of because to do so would be a violation of constitutional law. However, you have to show ample evidence of a false arrest to win your case.
Criminally Charged? Get Legal Help Now from Criminal Defense Lawyer In Western Massachusetts?
If you’re facing criminal charges due to a false arrest, don’t wait to reach out for legal assistance. Contact Jesse Adams to learn how he may be able to help you.