When the Police Knock at your Door
WHEN THE POLICE KNOCK AT YOUR DOOR...
IF the police knock at your door and ask to come in, you do not have to let them in unless they have a warrant signed by a judge. If they have a warrant, ask to see it.
IF IT IS AN ARREST WARRANT, CHECK the name to make sure they have the right person.
IF IT IS A SEARCH WARRANT, make sure it is for your specific address.
LOOK to see what is listed on the warrant to be searched for in your home.
IF the warrant is proper, you must allow them in.
IF the police do not have a warrant you may let them in
BUT you do not have to let them in unless they insist on coming in. Try to settle the issue at the door. If they do insist over your objections, then be careful to:
IF you are not sure that they are really police officers ask for the name of the highest ranking officer present at your door and a phone number where his identity can be verified. Call his/her command number, and even 911 so that a record can be established.
FIRST, Ask for a police badge.
SECOND, Ask them what their purpose is in coming into your house.
THIRD, If you object, make sure you tell them you do not consent to any search of your home.
FOURTH, Write down the names, badge numbers, physical description of the officers and the date and time.
IF the police take any of your property, they are REQUIRED TO GIVE YOU A WRITTEN RECEIPT for it.
IF they don't give you a receipt, ask for it. They are not required to give you a receipt for the property they intend to book as evidence such as stolen property, guns, etc.
The police may also search without a warrant whenever they have arrested a person. They may search his person and the area close by where the arrest was made.
They may also search after consent is given, so if you object, be sure to make it clear that you do not agree to any kind of search.
They may also search when there is an emergency (for example, someone screaming for help inside your home) or when they are chasing you or someone else
into your home.
This is called the EMERGENCY EXCEPTION.