The Fourth Amendment is part of the Bill of Rights and it specifically protects us from “unreasonable searches and seizures.” As with so much of the constitution, this amendment is open to interpretation and often its meaning is reinterpreted by the courts.
The Fourth Amendment reads, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
The protections afforded by this amendment include:
• Rights to be secure from unreasonable searches and seizures
• The need for probable cause in issuing search warrants
• The need to be specific in describing the search
This amendment protects us from unreasonable intrusions into our daily lives and keeps our homes secure from unwarranted intrusion by law enforcement, the government, and the courts. It says that everyone has a right to be secure in their homes from government intrusion. The Amendment also applies to our vehicles, anything we may carry one our person, such as a computer case, handbag or backpack, and any other such property.