The fourth amendment gives every person the right to be secure in their persons, and have the right against unreasonable searches and seizures. No searches can happen without a warrant and or probable cause. To search a home and seize papers or other personal belongs a warrant with probable cause is required. The warrant has to specifically describe the place being searched and what the search is for. Freedom from unreasonable searches is a fundamental part of the Constitution because it gives people the right to privacy and to not be harassed by the government.The 4th amendment of freedom from search and seizure was inspired by the unjust rule of King George III. For the 150 years that the British ruled over the American colonies, many unfair laws were put in place by the British monarchy. General warrants, the warrants used by the British were a direct cause of the 4th amendment.
The general warrant gave the government the unlimited right to break into people’s property and take private papers and property, without a being proven of doing what was accused. The British government would use these warrants against other opponents of the government and the officials who would do the searches were rumored to take some of the items found for personal use. Massachusetts was the first colony to get hit hard by the general warrants and got constantly abused by them, which was one reason that the Americans and Britains grew apart before the revolutionary war. The 4th amendment protects people from unreasonable searches of their persons, house, papers, and personal possessions. New Jersey v.
T.L.O was an important case that changed the perspective of the 4th amendment in schools and helped come up with a standard of what kind of searches are legal and illegal. T.L.O was a female high school student, one-day school officials searched her purse suspecting she had cigarettes. They found the cigarettes but also found a small amount of marijuana, and a list containing the names of students who owed her money.
The question of the case was, does the exclusionary rule apply to searches conducted by school officials in public schools. The Domestic Relations Court of New Jersey in Middlesex found her guilty but she appealed to the superior court of New Jersey but they said the same thing. Finally, the supreme court ruled 6-3 in favor of New Jersey. The supreme court gave the reasoning of probable cause for the decision. School authorities do not need to obtain a warrant or have probable cause that a crime occurred before searching a student, was also said by the court.
Since the search was off suspicion and in school the school was allowed to do it and T.L.O. can’t use her fourth amendment right.
Mapp v. Ohio was one of the most important fourth amendment cases. Dollree Mapp was convicted of possessing obscene materials after an illegal police search of her home for a fugitive.
The question presented to the supreme court was, Were the confiscated materials protected by the first amendment? (May evidence obtained through a search in violation of the fourth amendment be admitted in a state criminal proceeding?). The supreme court got rid of the first amendment issue, and stated that “all evidence obtained by searches and seizures in violation of the constitution is, by the fourth amendment, inadmissible in a state court.” The decision was 6-3 in Mapp’s favor. This decision made the court go down a troubled course of determining how and when to apply the exclusionary rule.Weeks v. the United States was an important case containing the fourth amendment in homes. Police entered Fremont Weeks home without a warrant and took papers which were used to convict him of transporting lottery tickets through the mail.
Weeks petitioned for the return of his private possessions. The question of the case was, Did the search and seizure of Weeks home violate the fourth amendment. The supreme court ruled in a unanimous decision that the search and seizure of weeks home violated his constitutional rights. The court also stated that the government would have to give back the private documents that were seized.
This case was the first application of the exclusionary rule. This rule excludes all evidence from a case that is found in an unconstitutional way.T.L.O v. New Jersey is the most important search and seizure case and shaped the future of the 4th amendment.
Before the T.L.O case, a lot of holes in the fourth amendment were found with different circumstances. Warrantless searches and probable clause had been established but there hadn’t been a big fourth amendment case regarding schools. The T.L.O case is such a landmark case because it established the way the fourth amendment was used in schools.
The case went back and forth the whole way with New Jersey winning the first two times. Then, T.L.O got a win when she won at the New Jersey state supreme court. By the time the case was getting debated in the supreme court T.
L.O had already served her probation and graduated high school. A win in the case would mean this smoking incident would be taken off her record. This was the first time the court had reached a conclusion on the fourth amendment applied to searches and seizures conducted by public school officials in school. New Jersey ended up winning the case and the supreme court ruled that there would be different rules for school officials in public schools regarding the fourth amendment. The supreme court established that the fourth amendment rules apply to public school officials and teachers because they are agents of the state.
Deputy attorney general Allan nodes said “In carrying out searches and other disciplinary functions… school officials act as representatives of the state, not merely as surrogates for the parents, and they cannot claim the parents immunity from the strictures of the fourth amendment.” This quote summarizes what the court’s expectations were for public school officials. All in all, to search a student’s belongings in public school there has to be a justified reason.
A student at a public school does not have the same fourth amendment rights as an adult does because the school needs to be a safe environment. In turn public school authorities don’t need a warrant or probable cause to search a student, instead, they need to have a good reason. The test for the reasonableness of a search determined by the court goes as follows, justified in its inception and was the search related in some way to the circumstances that justified the search. A public school teacher found T.L.O. smoking which gave reasonable suspicion to the public school official to search her purse.
The discovery of the rolling paper gave reasonable suspicion of marijuana which prompted the official to keep searching through T.L.O’s purse. Therefore, the search was legal and the evidence can be used against her.
The case of New Jersey v. T.L.
O was the most significant fourth amendment case in history for many reasons. The fourth amendment rights of public school students, officials, and teachers were all established after this case. Not only did the case help with the interpretation of the fourth amendment but also with the understanding of the federal law vs. the state law in interpreting the constitution.
Even with the T.L.O. case answering many questions about the fourth amendment grey areas are still common. At some public schools, random drug tests occur for all of the school’s students. In one way some people think that there is no cause for it and so it is unconstitutional. In another way, there could have been many instances of drugs being used in the public school violating the safe environment of the school so to protect it there are random drug tests. Even though there are still some grey areas the T.
L.O case was important.There were many important fourth amendment cases that helped shape the amendment but New Jersey v. T.L.O. was the most important.
New Jersey v. T.L.O.
was a fourth amendment case regarding public school. Mapp v. Ohio was another fourth amendment case but concerning search and seizure of a home.
Weeks v. the United States was a fourth amendment case concerning a home and was the first federal case to use the exclusionary rule. All of the cases were important but the T.L.O.
case was the most important. This case led to the way the fourth amendment was used in schools. In conclusion, the fourth amendment is an important right and gives people much needed privacy and protection.