In, “The Majority has variously restricted the right to search incident to lawful arrest to only those circumstances in which the weapon for which evidence was sought was inconceivable to be of immediate danger to the officer or others.” (Emphasis in original.)
But the Majority also held that this rule generates an artificial temporal illusory or linguistic cave into which the protection of that right is recessed, decreasing the importance of the right as it comes “into being” in the course of an arrest.
The Court’s interpretation of the Fourth Amendment is deeply flawed. In all likelihood, the Court left law enforcement officers across the country (including much to date still untrained) at the mercy of those in the legal profession who have been content to rubber-stamp unreasonably prolonged detention deemed necessary to, e.g., “develop the facts of the case.” And that Court-created “necessity” has been the standard by which many courts have for decades rightly regarded unreasonable prolonged detention.
But if we are to clearly and definitively recognize the protection afforded by the Fourth Amendment in all contexts, we should do so and not leave law enforcement officers at the mercy of those in the legal profession who have long been mired in uncertainty over the proper application of the text and history of the Fourth Amendment. d2c66b5586