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  1. #1
    Kymmie2453 is offline CJ Student
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    Probable Cause question

    I walk into a police station and turn over three pieces of jewelery, claiming that Mr. Smith robbed a local jewelery store two weeks ago then clam up. Once it has been established that the items were indeed stolen form that store, is there probable cause to search my home or Mr. Smiths home? Does probable cause exist to arrest me or Mr. Smith?
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  2. #2
    Jks9199 is offline The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    Probable cause is facts and information sufficient to convince a reasonable person that the evidence in question is more likely than not going to be found in the location named.

    So, let's look at what we know:
    1. You walked in with stolen jewelry.
    2. You named a specific person as having stolen the jewelry.
    3. You said nothing further.

    OK -- do we have PC for a search warrant? Probably not. We don't know where or how you obtained the stolen jewelry. Maybe Mr. Smith gave it to you. Maybe you spotted it in a pawn shop. We only know that you walked into the station with it... What facts or information tells us where any other evidence is likely to be found? Do we even know where Mr. Smith lives?

    What we do have is two good investigative leads: You, and Mr. Smith. Time to do some follow-up. Have either of you been pawning other stolen items? Is there anything else connecting either of you to the crime? What led you to turn the stuff in? Lover's quarrel?

    Some more work needs to be done before you can get a search warrant...

    As to arrests -- PC there is facts or circumstances that would make a reasonable man believe that the person in question more likely than not committed the crime in question.

    Same problems for robbery. All we know is that you had the stuff and alleged that Smith did it. What else ties him to the offense? Or you? However, if we really want to detain you and put some pressure on you -- we can make a mean-spirited case for possession of stolen property, no? It's not something you generally do with someone turning stolen property in -- but every once in a very long while, it's an appropriate tactic.
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  3. #3
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    jmur5074 is offline Moderator
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