Residents of Tennessee have the right to feel safe and secure in their homes. However, if the police come and wrongfully search your residence, you have rights.
What are your rights regarding search and seizure?
Per your Fourth Amendment rights, you have a right to be protected against illegal searches and seizures. This means that in most cases, the police cannot come into your home without a warrant and start searching it. Even if they suspect that you have committed a crime, a warrant is necessary unless you explicitly give them permission to conduct a search. If you say no when police request to search your home, they are required to leave.
What if police raid your home?
If the police force their way into your home to conduct a search, they are in violation of your Fourth Amendment rights. You have a right to file a lawsuit against the police department or precinct where they work. If you’re arrested, it’s not a legal arrest, which means you have a legitimate defense if you face criminal charges. You have the right to remain silent and do not have to answer any questions the police ask you.
After the incident, it’s wise to take notes and document everything that occurred during the police raid of your home. Whether the police illegally searched your home without a warrant or if they had the wrong address altogether, writing everything down can help you if you decide to file a lawsuit.
You should also try to get the names and badge numbers of the police officers involved in the wrongful search of your home.
When police officers fail to follow the proper procedures and the law, they are often reprimanded and held accountable by their superiors. You can request an investigation into the officers involved through the Internal Affairs Bureau and file your own separate legal action.