Never Let Police in Your Home Without a Warrant

If you have ever had the police come knocking at your door, you know that this can be a scary and stressful experience. After all, they don’t generally come to deliver good news.

When faced with this situation, it can be hard to know what to do. While your specific response will depend largely on why they are there, the one thing that will apply to all situations is that you should not let them in your house without a warrant in Alabama. This only exposed you to potential trouble as the police aren’t going to give out prizes for the “good guy.”

Police Have a Job to Do

Many people make the mistake of thinking that if they have nothing to hide, or they have broken no laws, there is no reason to deny the police entry into your home. Even if the police are not there for you (for example, they have questions about a relative or friend, etc), they are still on duty and have a job to do.

If the police notice something that is illegal or suspicious, they are obligated to investigate further. When they enter your home, they can use their eyes, ears, and noses to uncover crimes even if that’s not why they are there in the first place. Unless you know every law that is on the books, there is no way to be 100% certain that the officers will not see something they deem suspicious.

Anything You Say Can be Used Against You

Most people know that the police read people their rights, including the line “anything you say can and will be used against you” when you are arrested. Many people don’t realize, however, that this applies to any situation, even if you aren’t being arrested.

If you invite the police into your home to talk, they can use anything you say against you (or another party). In addition, police are allowed to lie in order to trick you into telling something. The bottom line is that talking to a police officer voluntarily cannot benefit you, so there is no reason to do it. If the police need to speak with you, tell them you want your lawyer present or decline to provide any information about their separate investigation.

Do Not Physically Stop the Police

In the vast majority of cases, if you simply tell the police that you do not give them permission to enter your home without a warrant, they will not violate your rights. In some cases, however, they will attempt to enter without your permission. If this happens, do not attempt to physically stop them using force.

Not only is this a fight you cannot win, but it could result in you being arrested or worse. Instead, simply repeat to them that you do not consent to any searches or seizures. If possible, record the interaction, but do not put yourself in danger. If they illegally enter your home, anything that they find will be inadmissible in court in almost all cases.

What Should You Do?

If the police do come knocking at your door asking to come in, what should you do? First, make sure that you stay calm and simply tell them that you do not allow law enforcement in your home without a warrant. If they keep talking tell them that you do not answer questions from police and that they can come back with a warrant or speak with you when you have your lawyer present. 

As soon as the police leave, or as soon as it is safe to do so, make sure to contact the law offices of John M. Totten to discuss your situation. We can help determine what, if anything, is likely to happen next so you can be prepared.

John M. Totten