Under what circumstances do police have the right to come on private property that is posted with a "No Tresspassing" sign with out a search warrent?

Expert Answers
pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As far as coming on private property without a warrant, the police are allowed to conduct warrantless searches and seizures in a number of circumstances.  The basic idea is that they may do this when there is a good reason for them to believe that a crime is being committed or that evidence of a crime is present right now but will not be present by the time they get a warrant.

So, for example, if the police hear screams coming from behind your fence, they can come and investigate since the screams would give them reasonable cause to believe a crime is being committed.

As another example, if the police think they see you selling drugs out on the street and then you disappear inside your house, they can come in without a warrant.  This is because by the time they got the warrant, you could flush the drugs.

So the requirement that police have a warrant does not apply in this sort of "emergency" situation.

dano7744 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Many situations and different scenarios lend themselves to LE entering your property without a search warrant. The No Trespassing sign is irrelevant as far as the police go. One of the basic tenets of police work is the protection of the public. It is a public safety issue. Having said that, LE can enter your property to, for example, question you or someone who is on your property. They can enter if investigating a crime , whether or not you are a suspect is not pertinent, they can also enter when  someone there is in distress.  Also, circumstances exist when police can search a location without a search warrant. They are called warrantless searches.