Arrest Warrant

Arrest Warrant – Do the police need a warrant to come into my house?

Do the police need an arrest warrant to come inside a house in order to arrest someone?  Most people think of warrants they think of search warrants where the police come into a house and search for drugs.  But what if the police come to a home to arrest a person?  Do they need a warrant?

Usually.  But there are exceptions which depend on the facts of your particular case.  If the police have come into your house for any reason, with or without an arrest warrant – you probably need a lawyer. Call our Trinity criminal defense lawyer today.

Arrest Warrant

If there is a specific crime that a person is charged with, police may obtain a warrant to arrest them at their home or anywhere they find them.  In Florida, there often is a warrant for the person’s arrest based on the State Attorney investigation and filing of formal charges (called an “Information”).

How else can they get an arrest warrant?

A police officer can write up a sworn statement (affidavit) which says specifically what the probable cause is for the crime.  In the statement they must also state how they know it’s you who committed the crime. Then they bring (fax or email works) it to a judge to sign. This is all much easier than it seems.  There are standard forms, and there are judges on duty 24 hours a day in all Florida counties.

But most of the time police simply have “probable cause” for a crime that recently happened.  If they come to your home and know you are inside, they cannot come inside your home to arrest you without a warrant or unless there are “exigent circumstances” present.

If the police have a warrant to arrest you, or you have given consent to enter, and there’s ANYTHING at all illegal which they see in PLAIN VIEW, they can then arrest you for that too.  But NOT if you didn’t give consent to enter. (Unfortunately, most people don’t give consent, yet almost every police report says someone gave consent to enter.)

Coming into your house is very different from being arrested in a public place. If the police see you in a bar, walking on the street, driving your car, and they have probable cause to arrest you, they will.  They don’t need a warrant.

If the police want to come into your home and claim they have probable cause for your arrest, don’t go outside – and don’t let them in. Better yet, don’t answer the door.  Contact our experienced criminal defense attorneys today to discuss your rights.

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