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:: A constitutional law blog by Scalia/Thomas fan David M. Wagner, M.A., J.D., Research Fellow, National Legal Foundation, and Teacher, Veritas Preparatory Academy. Opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not reflect those of the NLF or Veritas. :: bloghome | E-mail me ::

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    :: Saturday, February 05, 2005 ::
    Con Crim Pro questions from a student:
    1. The book on page189 talks about direct observations by police and throws out a couple of questions pertaining to the reasonable suspicision the police must have to stop someone. I guess my questions is about the questions that the book asks. How much should the court rely on officer's expertise in assessing potential criminal behavior. In the case they mention, Brooks v. United States, the officer knew that the perpetrator's already had prior convictions for larceny. But what if he hadn't, would there still have been reasonable suspicision?
    For reasonable suspcicion, the officer needs only "articulable facts" that support the suspicion. The idea seems to be to rule out mere hunches but allow just about everything else. More when we look at Terry itself. (For latecomers, this question came up in the context of Ybarra and Summers.)
    2. I guess my only other question is about no-knock entry. I'm assuming per the opinion entered by the court in Richards v. Wisconsin has unanimously rejected that the police NEVER have to knock in a drug case. Does this just mean it's another reasonable suspicision standard? Discretionary?
    Richards simply affirms that the presumption in favor of knock-and-announce prevails in drug cases as in all other cases. It can be overcome by "exigent circumstances," and this may indeed be more likely in drug cases, but the Court rejected a per se exception for drug cases.

    :: David M. Wagner 1:01 PM [+] ::

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