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Probable Cause to Arrest

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Definition - What does Probable Cause to Arrest mean?

Probable cause is a term standard identified in the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution. It is "the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized".

Prior to an arrest for driving under the influence (DUI) a law enforcement office must have established probable cause to conduct a search of the driver or their car. If an officer has established probable cause for to arrest the driver, the driver will be arrested and taken to the police station. The driver must be read their Miranda Rights and they have the option to consent to a blood alcohol test (BAC test).

DUI stops, searches or arrests which are made without probable cause may result in the suppression of evidence by the court or a dismissal of the DUI case.

Related Links

  • The Fourth amendment -- wikipedia explanation of the Fourth amendment.
  • Miranda Rights -- If a suspect has been arrested the police are required to read them their Miranda Rights.

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