Can the Police Break Down my Door to Enter my Home in Florida?

Often times, the police will knock the front door down or breach the door with an object in order to carry out a search warrant where they are looking for drugs or to arrest someone inside. In television shows and in the movies, we often see the police kicking down the door, but this can be a problem. The reason the police do this is because they think that the people inside are hiding or destroying evidence after they have done what is called a “knock and announce”. The police are required to knock and identify themselves by shouting that they are the police and they have a warrant. They often will use a battering ram to knock the door down. Sometimes, they do this almost simultaneously to knocking down the door and this is where a citizen’s 4th Amendment rights may be violated.

It is important to consult an experienced attorney who has knowledge of 4th Amendment search and seizure issues in these circumstances. All citizens enjoy a reasonable expectation of privacy in their own home and all are guaranteed the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

Written by

Ray Lopez has practiced since 1990, with prior experience as a Hillsborough County assistant State attorney and lawyer for the Tampa Police Department. He handles all criminal charges, from traffic violations and misdemeanors to serious felonies and federal drug charges. He practices in all state and federal courts of the Tampa Bay area and throughout Florida, as well as criminal appeals, juvenile court, administrative hearings, and civil forfeiture proceedings.

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