• Last updated on November 11, 2022

The Supreme Court’s decision established rules for protective searches during an arrest.

A 7-2 majority of the Supreme Court created a two-stage test to determine when police officers may make a warrantless “protective sweep” of the premises as a part of an arrest of a suspect in his or her home to ensure safety of the police and others. The first stage says the police may check closets and any spaces immediately adjacent to the location of the arrest to protect against hidden attacks. The second stage says they may search other areas where a person could be found only if a reasonably prudent officer believed those areas harbored a person dangerous to the police or others. Justice Byron R. WhiteWhite, Byron R.;Maryland v. Buie[Maryland v. Buie] wrote the opinion for the Court with Justices John Paul Stevens and Anthony M. Kennedy concurring. Justices William J. Brennan, Jr., and Thurgood Marshall dissented.Search and seizure;Maryland v. Buie[Maryland v. Buie]

Fourth Amendment

Search warrant requirement

Stop and frisk rule

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