Circumstances in Which a Police Officer Can Detain You Without a Warrant

Posted on January 9, 2014

Speeding Offenses

As a general rule, a police officer doesn’t need an arrest warrant to detain you if he or she sees or reasonably suspects a crime is occurring. As a DUI attorney in Redwood City can explain, even in the absence of an impending crime, an officer can still stop you if he’s acting as a “community caretaker.”

A DUI Attorney in Redwood City Explains the Community Caretaker Doctrine in a DUI Case

As your DUI attorney in Redwood City will discuss, a police officer doesn’t always need a warrant to stop you. If he or she sees or suspects a crime is about to take place, there’s no need for a warrant. Additionally, if the officer reasonably believes you or someone else is in danger, he can also stop you without a warrant.

Your DUI lawyer in Redwood City may explain case law to help you understand how this might arise in a DUI case. In a Montana case, a suspect was stopped by an officer who observed him pulled to the side of the road with his lights off and car running. When the defendant didn’t wake, the officer opened the door and found him drunk. The officer’s actions were deemed justified.

A DUI Attorney in Redwood City Explains What the Prosecution Must Prove

A DUI lawyer in Redwood City knows the prosecution must prove three things to use this exception:

  • The officer relied on specific facts to suspect you were in danger;
  • The officer acted reasonably in coming to your aid; and
  • If the danger passes, the 4th amendment applies.

Your DUI lawyer in Redwood City can explain how the 4th Amendment and state law protects you from unreasonable searches and seizures once the community caretaker circumstances end. A DUI attorney in Redwood City can review whether this doctrine applies in your case.

Let a highly qualified DUI attorney in Redwood City review your charges and advise you of your legal options. Call Silveira Law at (415) 795-3890 today to set up an appointment.