The fourth amendment to the United States Constitution, applicable to the states through the fourteenth amendment, guarantees to every citizen the indefeasible right to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures. As a response to a long history of English colonial abuses, the fourth amendment was intended by the drafters of the Bill of Rights to be a safeguard against governmental misuse of the writs of assistance' and the general warrant. The Supreme Court has broadly interpreted the constitutional mandate of the fourth amendment as proscribing all searches and seizures which do not comply with its stringent provisions. However, certain specifically established and well-defined exceptions to the warrant requirement have been judicially recognized as being within the general framework of the Constitution. One such recognized exception is a search conducted pursuant to voluntary consent.
Search and Seizure- Knowledge of Fourth Amendment Rights Not a Prerequisite to a Valid Consent Search,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
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