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Do Judges Bend Law to Favor Law Enforcement?

Sep 2nd, 2016 Law Enforcement

Our country was founded on the principle of limited government.  This means that police officers are supposed to be limited in their ability to do things like search your home, stop and frisk you on the street or even stop your car.  The question is limited by whom?  And the answer is, limited by judges.

The judges are members of the judicial branch of government, while the police are members of the executive.  Thus, when judges limit the power of the police they are doing what the constitution says they are supposed to do.  But when they expand the power of the police, they are abnegating their constitutional role.

This is a problem at all levels of government, but is a gigantic problem when we are talking about the court of final authority, the Supreme Court.  That’s why it’s so significant when a Supreme Court Justice complains that the United States Supreme Court is bending the rules to favor the police and prosecutors.

A recent case involving such a bending of the rules is Heien v. North Carolina.  According to the Huffington Post, during oral argument on this case:

But Justice Sotomayor’s forceful response stood out. Not only did she point out that signing off on dog sniffs that are extraneous to the mission of a given stop would create “an entitlement to search for drugs by using dogs, whenever anybody’s stopped,” but, responding to Anders’ plea for leeway, she made a more profound point: “We can’t keep bending the Fourth Amendment to the resources of law enforcement.” Sotomayor may have been an alluding to Heien v. North Carolina, a 2014 case in which the Court (over Justice Sotomayor’s strong dissent) held that a traffic stop based on a police officer’s mistaken view of the law did not violate the Fourth Amendment because that mistake was “reasonable.”

Even with this new USSC case, the law in Michigan for drunk driving cases is still largely the same; any stop for drunk driving in Michigan must be based on probable cause; or the police must see your car violate the traffic code.  In other words, the stop must be reasonable.

If you have been arrested in Michigan for DUI and you think the stop of your car was unreasonable, contact the Barone Defense Firm today for your FREE no obligation case review!