LSTD400

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Probable cause is the legal standard by which a police officer or law enforcement official has the right to make an arrest, conduct a personal or property search, or obtain a warrant for arrest. While many factors contribute to a police officer’s level of authority in a given situation, probable cause requires facts or evidence that would lead to a reasonable person to believe that a suspect has committed a crime. So, in the case of Mayo vs the People of the State of Texas, the police did have probable cause to arrest Mayo because of the illegal possession of a firearm. However, based on the 2007 Texas state law that allows a defendant to use deadly force in the event they were threatened, so even though mayo shot and kill Scowen, I don’t believe that the police had probable cause to arrest Mayo in that particular instance.

The police did not violate Mayo’s constitutional rights, and in this cause, it was his 4th Amendment rights that would have been violated. Even though Mayo shot Scowen in self-defense, he did so using an illegal firearm giving the police the probable cause they needed to make an arrest. The police was also suppose to read Mayo his Miranda Rights, because anyone that is in custody (deprived of his or her freedom of action in any significant way), the police must read the Miranda rights to the individual(s), and because the police did question Mayo to get his side of the story that maybe potentially used in a trial, it further validates the reason why the police should have read Mayo his Miranda rights.

References:

Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 86 S. Ct. 1602, 16 L. Ed. 2d 694 (1966).

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