Plain View Doctrine

Plain View Doctrine

Plain View Doctrine

In line with Craig Hemmens

about Plain View Doctrine in the Encyclopedia of Law Enforcement:

The plain view doctrine states that an item within the sight of a police officer who is legally in a position to see the item may be seized without a warrant, as long as the item is immediately recognizable as contraband or evidence subject to seizure. Plain view is a recognized exception to the warrant requirement of the Fourth Amendment, although a plain view observation technically does not constitute a search, as there is no reasonable expectation of privacy regarding items left out in the open. For the plain view doctrine to apply, the police must be lawfully present. This means the police must have a legal right to be where they are when they observe an item in plain view. This is sometimes referred to as a “valid prior intrusion” ( Harris v. United States of America , 1968).

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