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Thomas Cena, Jr.
Attorney at Law
2115 N. 30th St., Ste. 201, Tacoma, WA 98403
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I did a short search in WestNext regarding any recent federal authority concerning a “terrorist exception” to the warrant requirement but did not find anything. So the police can’t just come into your house without your consent (which they are sometimes very skillful in obtaining) or have a warrant unless they have probable cause to believe there is a crime and there is evidence of the crime at the location to be searched and very extraordinary (exigent) circumstances to enter and search without a warrant.

An example of this would be to prevent serious harm to an innocent person. Just to come in and search would be a “general search” that the colonists complained of. So a citizen definitely has the right to deny law enforcement entry to his /her home. To invoke the right to be “secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures…” a citizen might, without any show of force, firmly deny the police entry. (“Officer, this is my private residence and you do not have my permission to enter. You may not come in. Good night.”)

It would be inadvisable to use any show of force, display a weapon, or physically resist if the police decide to come in anyway. Of possible endings there, more bad ones than good are imaginable.

However, if the police do then enter, they are then the ones breaking the law. The homeowner’s remedies, both civilly and as against the government’s seizure of evidence, or use of same against the citizen, fall decidedly to his or her advantage.

Morgan Allison
Allison & Allison
7836 Park Ave., Houma, LA 70364
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Absent some exigent circumstances, they cannot come in without a warrant. As to how to handle the situation: First, don’t open the door for them. Keep the door locked.

If you open the door, they may consider that an “invitation” to come in. If you feel you must step outside to deal with them, ask them to step back from the door if they are close enough to rush in. Only open the door far enough to slip out. Close and lock the door behind you.


The Network extends a big “Thank you!” to our Affiliated Attorneys for this great discussion. Check back next month more for answers from our Affiliated Attorneys on this important question.

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