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The Sanders Firm, P.C.: The Fourth Amendment and Suspected Child Abuse

At The Sanders Firm, P.C., we take allegations regarding suspected child abuse seriously; however, we also take the Fourth Amendment seriously as well. In the past few years, various cases have come into the spotlight in which investigators, including child welfare workers, law enforcement officials, and school employees, have negated the Fourth Amendment rights of suspected child abuse perpetrators. In some case, suspected child abusers have had their children “seized” then later there is no finding of abuse against them. Everyone loses. The violation of the Fourth Amendment rights of suspects in these cases creates complications for parents, children, the courts, and those suspected of child abuse. As it is with any type of charge, even in child abuse cases our property and person are protected under the Fourth Amendment.

Proper Procedure

The Fourth Amendment clearly outlines our rights in terms of our being secure against unwarranted actions by law enforcement and the government. If someone is suspected of a crime, proper procure must be followed.

The Fourth Amendment makes our rights and the responsibilities of the government clear in matters related to the seizure of property and person. It observes, “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.”

It is precisely stated in the amendment that people have the right to be secure within their homes and that their property is also considered to be secure. Property in this case pertains not only to items in our home, but also those personal items we carry with us including backpacks, computers, computer cases, handbags, and other items. Thus, our property is also protected when we are away from our home. And although child abuse is a horrific crime, suspected child abuse is just that. By not adhering to the “probable cause” aspect of the Fourth Amendment and by not securing a search warrant, investigators not only put the suspect’s civil rights in jeopardy, but they also put the welfare of the alleged victim in danger.

Have Your Rights Been Violated?

We at The Sanders Firm, P.C. in New York are concerned about everyone’s Fourth Amendment rights, which guard against unreasonable search and seizure. With suspected child abuse cases, because these are emotionally charged, there can be a rush to judgment and a tendency to be fast and loose with the law. A child’s welfare is at stake, and those who are working for that child’s benefit know that the victim is totally defenseless. At times, people, whose rights have been violated, end up being charged when they have done nothing wrong. With so much on the line, it is essential that law enforcement officials and investigators have probable cause and the proper authority to conduct searches of homes and person, question suspects, and engage in the seizure of property.

Contact Us with Questions

If you have are suspected of child abuse and you feel your Fourth Amendment rights have been violated, contact The Sanders Firm, P.C. in New York City. We will review your complaint and work with you to assure you get justice. Call The Sanders Firm, P.C. We are your voice for justice.

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