What Is a Warrant?

A Review of The Different Kinds of Warrants

A warrant is an authorization that is issued by a competent officer, mostly a magistrate or judge. A police officer, constable or sheriff is directed by the court to serve it to the intended person. These orders allow an otherwise illegal act, which would violate individual rights, and exonerates the individual executing the order from damages resulting from the act if it is performed.

In the United States Constitution’s Fourth Amendment, a warrant is necessitated where a property must be searched or when an order has been issued for a person to be arrested. The most common orders to be issued by courts include arrest warrants as well as search and police warrants.

Before issuing police warrants or any other orders, a police officer will have adduced a written affidavit before the magistrate or judge. The affidavit, which is usually given under oath, must indicate information to establish probable cause that a given crime was committed by the individual named therein. The objective of arrest warrants is to authorize the arrest and detention of a person. In many jurisdictions, an individual may seek for a court order for misdemeanors that do not take place in the view of a police officer.

Nevertheless, if the police have appropriate probable cause, they may not need a written permission to arrest an individual who is suspected of a felony.

In addition, courts issues alias, bench, capias and fugitive warrants. Alias writs are issued when an individual fails to appear in court for a court date prior to any plea being entered. Failure to appear in court results in an extra charge. Bench writs are issued when a person fails to appear for a specified court appearance. Capias warrants are issued when a person enters a guilty judgment either through a plea or court appearance then fails to complete the stipulated conditions such as paying a fine in the specified period. Fugitive orders are issued from a different state when a subject/ person is believed to be within a local jurisdiction

A search warrant is a court order, which a judge, magistrate, or Supreme Court official issues to okay law enforcement officers to carry out a search of an individual, vehicle, or location for evidence of a crime. In addition, it authorizes law enforcement to confiscate any evidence that they find. It is often issued in jurisdictions that value the rule of law regarding the right to privacy, which constrains police powers.

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