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Illegal search, False Arrest? Arrest, Search, Seizure, Warrant

Discussion in 'Criminal Procedure, Criminal Court' started by poorsilver, Oct 31, 2003.

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  1. poorsilver

    poorsilver Law Topic Starter New Member

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    The following is an account of a recent experience I had in a neighboring county in S.C. My Question is Do I have any Grounds for suit?

    Dear Sirs,
    On the evening OF october the 21st, I had the pleasure of going hunting
    in rural Edgefield County. After the sun had started to set I climbed down
    from my stand and made the 1/4 mile trek back to my car, Which was parked on the
    property of the owners land I had been hunting.

    Upon returning to my car, I noticed that in the yard of the owners land, were three
    Edgefield Sherrifs dept. patrol cars parked out front. Because, it was now dark
    and I wanted to eliminate the chance of a confrontation of meeting an officer while possessing a rifle, I
    Placed the rifle inside my car and locked the door.

    After placing the rifle into the car, I observed that the front door of the home was open. There also
    Was no person visable on the ourside of the home or the inside from the front porch. I wanted to inform the
    Landowner that I was leaving and had made it out of the woods. So, I stood in the doorway and called out to him.
    There was no answer. I called again to no avail. Hearing voices from inside the home I called out again.
    At This point, 3 deputies emerged from the home.

    As the deputies emerged from the home, I asked if the landowner was present. The deputy in charge responded "who is that?".
    I responded that he was the owner. The Deputy asked who I was. I Told him my name, and offered my drivers liscense when he
    quickly asked for proof. I asked the deputy what the problem was. He declined to answer me saying that it was of no concern to me.
    He then reponded by asking me what my business was at this property while having me empty all of my pockets and searching me.. I explained to him that I had been hunting and was coming in from the woods.
    as was evident by the complete camoflauge clothing from head to toe. Again I asked the Officer was there a problem. Again the same response.
    I then asked asked the officer if I could leave, to which he stated that I could not. I asked, why I could not leave and again, was given no answer.
    The officer in charge then asked "what type of rifle do you own?". At this point I had actually become scared and fearfull of my well being.
    I wasMiles from the nearest home in the middle of nowhere and being questioned by police officers who refused to tell me
    what was going on. So I continued to answer their following question. I told them the Brand, Model and caliber of my rifle which I had recently
    purchased from wal-mart and was registered to my name. I could not understand why the interest in my rifle? where they going to
    take it from me? Were the owners inside dead? All I wanted to do was Go home.

    The officers asked where my rifle was and I told them it was locked in the car. The officer then told me to give him the keys. Then, he and two other deputies
    proceeded to my car, after telling Officer Lipscomb(the only officer close enough to me to see his name in the darkness) to keep me there and make sure I did not move.
    I asked this Officer what was going on, while the others walked towards my car? His response was the same as the others, You do not need to know.
    I was being questioned, detained, had my property taken from me(keys), Officers were breaking into my car, taking out my rifle,
    one officer was keeping me from moving.
    I asked the Officer what they were doing with my car and he reponded that "they just want to see your rifle. However, the officers proceeded to enter my car from both doors.
    searched throughout my car, going through my glove compartments, consoles backseat and under the seats. I was really scared to think that these officers were now violating my
    rights by searching my car without authorization and with no reason to believe or expect that I had committed a crime. The very first thing they did was check my liscense, running it through
    the system and coming out clean. And now I watch in astonishment as these officers opened my trunk searching for god knows what. If ever A grown man has felt as hopeless and vulnerable
    as I did at that moment,may God erase it from his memory.
    After the Officers spent about fifteen to twenty minutes searching my car, and reading my rifles serial numbers and calling them in, they returned
    to where the Officer had ordered me to sit. Now, armed with the knowledge that I was A) who I said I was B) Not who they were looking for C) had no record
    D) had no outstanding warrants E) was in possesion of a Lawfully obtained weapon F) had a viable reason for being there at that place in time G) absolutely, could not have been the person they were
    looking for I assumed I could go.
    The lead officer told me that I could not go no where until he said so after I asked if I could leave for the 3rd or fourth time. I even told the officers as I had earlier, that they could call
    me or come to my home if they needed me for anything. The answer was still, NO! The lead officer then gathered the other officers and upon giving the Officer lipscomb the
    order to make sure I did not go anywhere, left the premises. I just knew now was when it was going to happen, No witnesses.
    I asked the officer who was left there to detain me, If I could go to my car, the answer? No! Can I make a call on my Cell phone?, I asked. Again, NO!
    I prayed that my wife would call the state police or Game wardens to look for me as it was getting late and she had not heard from me as I usually call imediately after
    leaving the stand. Maybe they would find me and help me. Needless to say I remained held against my will by this deputy and others. Still with no explanations as to why ?
    I asked the deputy if I could leave to go to the storea mile or two down the road. Explaining that I was Hungry, thirsty, and needed to use the restroom after hunting for twelve hours. I offered to return immediately.
    Again The answer was NO! I asked who the other deputies were, I was told"that really aint none of your damn business is it"
    It only got more Humiliating after that I was forced to Urinate in this front yard to keep from urinating on myself. After approximately 30 more minutes the other officers arrived back on the seen. I now felt
    a little relief at least feeling that I might have a chance at living. Another 15-30 minutes passed and more deputies arrived at the scene. I then fealt I might make it out of there.
    However, I was refused again the right to leave repeatedly and also the right to know why I was being held. But this did not surprise me. Not after they had also stolen my property, and conducted illegal searches I presumed
    on my person and property. While denying my Civil liberty and right to be informed of the reason I was being held. However after 2 hours or more of hell
    I was released, still unknowing of why I was imprisoned, Humiliated and Violated.
  2. rochella

    rochella New Member

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    Call a lawyer immediately. This is the worst case of harassment I have ever seen.
  3. windwalker

    windwalker New Member

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    Criminal Actions

    You can indeed call an attorney adn that would be a very good idea.

    Also i nthe mean time I would suggest that you do something more as well.

    I would suggest that you contact the United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Criminal Section, Special Litigations Unit in Washington DC and allege criminal violations of 18 USC 241 and 18 USC 242 "Police Misconduct".

    U.S. Department of Justice
    Civil Rights Division
    Criminal Section
    Special Litigations Unit
    Office of the Assistant Attorney General
    P.O. Box 65808
    Washington, D.C. 20035-5808
    (202) 514-2151 (Voice)
    (202) 514-0716 (TDD)
    (202) 307-2839 (Fax)

    Stating allegations of violations of the 4th and 5th amendments.

    It is essential to show a pattern of action in these charges. In most cases this means that an individual has acted this way in more than one instance, however, when there are multiple individuals involved, the pattern is more easily established in one instance.

    I would also talk to the landowner and see if he has the names of the other officers that were present adn if the yindeed had a warrent or viable "Probable Cause" as is outlined in the 4th amendment.

    If a warrent was indeed issued, you might want to have your attorney get a copy of it.

    I hope this helps some.


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