An Officer’s view on Racial Profiling

Police Officers and Tattoos

Can a Passenger Be Detained on a Traffic Stop?

Search Warrant Exceptions

Use of force: Defining 'objectively-reasonable' force

Police Use of Force


Why Legalizing Drugs is a Bad Idea

Good Cops Are Forged in the Fire of Good Defense Attorneys

Hey Officer! Do you hear me?

Traffic Cameras Come To Oklahoma

Law Enforcement and Drivers from Foreign Countries

Excited Delirium & Sudden Death

When do you Mirandize?

Online Sexual Predator Stings

Police Who Overreact

Duty to Take Risks, Not Abuse

Can Sexual Harassment Affect an Officer's Safety?


Follow the links above to read about the many cases listed under each catagory. The site contains information on hundreds of cases.
It is important to understand Court Jurisdiction before applying any case law. The case law established by a court's decisions only applies to the citizens under its jurisdiction. To narrow down the focus of the case law listed on this site, I limited the case law for the most part to federal circuit courts and the United States Supreme Court. The United States Supreme Court decisions apply to all citizens of the United States and its territories. The Federal Circuit Courts' decisions apply only to the states and territories in their circuits. If you are not sure which Federal Court circuit you are in go to United States Courts.
If you have any cases that you would like to see added to this site, find any errors, or just want to contact me please e-mail me at info@caselaw4cops.net.
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Heien v. North Carolina, No. 13-604 (SCOTUS, 2014)-The officer stopped a vehicle for a brake light out. He became suspicious and asked for consent to search. He found trafficking weight of cocaine. Heien was arrested and convicted. Heien appealed to the State Supreme Court. The Court tossed the conviction because state law only requires one functioning brake light which Heien's vehicle had. The US Supreme Court held that as long as the mistake in law was reasonable, then the officer had reasonable suspicion to make the stop. The conviction stands.

Arrest out of home-


US v. Nora, No. 12-50485 (9th Cir 2014)-Officers saw Nora standing on the sidewalk by his house. As they approached him he had moved to his porch. The officers saw a handgun in his hand. He entered his house and shut the door. The officers called for backup. Over twenty officers surrounded his house and a helicopter watched from above. The officers ordered him out of the house at gunpoint. They arrested him for the misdemeanor offense of carrying a firearm in public. The officers did not know Nora or that he had a felony conviction at the time of arrest. They searched him and found drugs. They questioned him. He admitted to more drugs being in the house. The officers got a warrant and searched his house. They found distribution quantity of cocaine, methamphetamine, and numerous firearms in the house. The Court held that Nora was unlawfully arrested out of his house in violation of Payton v. New York. It was a minor offense and there were no exigent circumstances justifying the warrantless arrest from his home. The drugs found on him and his statement were excluded. The officers did not name specifically in the search warrant that they were looking for the pistol they saw Nora with. The search warrant only mentioned any firearm. The Court invalidated the entire search warrant.


US v. Salgado, No. 13-2480 (8th Cir. 2014)-A Trooper stopped to assist Salgado whose vehicle was broken down on the side of the road. The Trooper developed reasonable suspicion to detain Salgado and call for a drug dog. The Trooper tried to find a close K-9, but could not. He called out another Trooper with a K-9, but he was 45 miles away. It took an hour for him to arrive. The court said the wait was reasonable under the circumstances.


US v. Williams, 13-2390 (8th Cir 2014)-Williams arrived home during the execution of a search warrant for child porn. A federal agent told him he was not under arrest and asked if he would answer some questions. Williams was allowed to walk to the restroom and get a drink of water. He was not restrained. When agents were done with the search warrant, Williams was not immediately arrested. The lower court said that Williams should have been read the Miranda warning. The 8th Circuit Court reversed and held that Williams was not in custody for Miranda purposes.


US v. Arnott, 13-1881 (1Cir. 2014)-The frisk was lawful because Arnott was stopped for possibly being involved in a recent drug deal. He was highly nervous and the connection between guns and drugs is legendary.

US v. Hayden, 13-2291 (8th Cir. 2014)-When a police officer identifies himself by saying, "Police" to someone on the street, it is not a seizure under the Fourth Amendment.

The officers received notice that there has been a rash of robberies and burglaries in a high crime area. Officers saw Hayden and his partner casing a house at night in the area. They identified themselves by saying, "Police". Hayden turned away and put his hand in his pocket. The officer ordered him to remove his hand. He did so. The officer frisked him and found a gun. Hayden was arrested. It was a lawful search and arrest.

Traffic Stop-

US v. Burgess, No. 13-3571 (7th Cir. 2014)-Several 911 calls of shots fired in an area within a few minutes, and all the callers described the general area and nature of the crime. Callers also described the suspect's vehicle. All rose to the level of reasonable suspicion for officers to stop Burgess.