U.S. Supreme Court Poised to Decide Fate of Castle Doctrine

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From WorldNet Daily

The castle doctrine protects people in their homes from invasion and assault, but a case before the U.S. Supreme Court could change that.

It would give police unrestricted rights to barge into homes when the dispute is over something as minor as a misdemeanor traffic infraction.

“That can’t be right,” contends a friend-of-the-court brief from the Institute for Justice in the case California vs Lange.

“Start with a simple example: Under the lower court’s categorical rule, a police officer who saw a man jaywalk across the street and enter his home could claim he was in ‘hot pursuit’ – even if the jaywalker was unaware – and burst into his home without a warrant,” the brief says.

“The street could be totally empty, and the officer could have ample time to get a warrant, but as long as jaywalking was a criminal offense, neither fact would matter. All that would matter would be that the officer believed he saw the man jaywalk and started pursuing him.”

The brief argues that in America, “our homes are supposed to be our castles.”

“But that security is in doubt. In California v. Lange, the U.S. Supreme Court will decide if the Fourth Amendment allows police to enter people’s homes without a warrant whenever an officer is pursuing anyone they think has committed any jailable misdemeanor,” IJ says.

Read Full Article at WorldNet Daily




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