In Sarasota, Florida, police were having trouble with the high amount of drug-dealers at The Mediterranean Apartment Complex. Police launched stake-outs and various other ways to try to catch these drug dealers in the act; but from the way the apartment parking lot was set up- it made it easy for the dealers to make getaways and avoid getting arrested.
So Sarasota police decided to try something that they thought was a new tactic. the asked for and received from a Florida judge- what was called an “All Persons’” warrant. This gave them the power to go in and raid all the apartments in The Mediterranean Apartment complex. The SWAT team and several police officers conducted police searches of many innocent peoples’ apartments in front of their families, at gunpoint.
In the end, a whole four people were arrested and not charged with any crimes. Regardless, because of the “All Persons” warrant concept- it wouldn’t even matter because as long as these four people plead not-guilty and opt to take their case to a jury trial- these four people would be released because the “All Persons” warrant would be inadmissible in court.
An “All Persons’” warrant is highly unconstitutional. When you compare the concept of an “All Persons’” warrant side by side with The 4th Amendment- one can clearly see why. Here is the text of The 4th Amendment:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The Sarasota Police Department also thought that an “All Persons’” warrant was a new idea that they could get away with in this situation. In reality though, it is this idea of an “All Persons’” warrant and blatant abuse of power when implementing is just over 200 years old. This was a tactic used by The British on us Americans before The Revolution and is the reason we have The 4th Amendment put into our Constitution permanently.
More can be read here about the “All Persons’” warrant here: http://current.com/news