The Fourth Amendment protects us from unreasonable search and seizures of our person, our house, our papers, and our effects. In many cases, this amendment governs our interactions with the police. Before the government—including police officers—can search your home or seize your property, it needs a good reason. This is the big idea behind the Fourth Amendment’s warrant requirement. The government needs particularized suspicion—a reason that’s specific to each suspect—before it can get a warrant. Broadly speaking, our Constitution says that the police should only be able to invade a person’s rights to privacy, property, or liberty if they have a specific reason to think that the suspect has done something wrong.
Constitution 101: Module 11: The Fourth Amendment