Give Now

Lawmakers Examine Entry Resistance, Police Conduct Laws

Legislators are finishing a proposal to clarify the rights and responsibilities of both police and homeowners when officers arrive at the door.

Bloomington Police Officer

Photo: Emily Loftis / WFIU News

Lawmakers say they will attempt to legislate around a much-criticized Indiana Supreme Court ruling.

Dozens of legislators expressed outrage when the Indiana Supreme Court ruled homeowners’ proper recourse was a lawsuit if police barge in without a warrant. Several rushed to draft bills specifying a right to resist.

The study panel is expected to vote next week on a proposal making clear that police can enter a residence without a warrant in cases of domestic violence or other situations in which there is a threat of immediate harm; in “hot pursuit” of a suspect; or if officers are invited to enter, without objection. Senator Mike Young, R-Indianapolis, drafted that proposal.

“The person who’s being battered oftentimes will not say anything while the batterer’s there, because they’re fearful,” Young says. “What if the police officer says, ‘Okay, I‘m going to let it go,’ and they’ve said something against that person? Their life may be now in danger, and they refuse to say anything.”

A final draft from a study committee is expected to instead spell out specific circumstances in which police have a right to enter. The draft is also expected to incorporate a proposal legally defining conduct unbecoming an officer. That idea was from Senator Tim Lanane, D-Anderson.

“He [an officer] looks in the window, sees a group of people cutting up cocaine or something, and realizes, ‘By the time I go get a warrant, come back, they’ll be gone.’ Because that is the commission of a crime at that point in time, he would be allowed to enter,” Lanane says.

Hammond Rep. Linda Lawson, a former police officer, says the recommendations are vastly improved over early proposals she says would have essentially declared “open season” on police.

Network Indiana

Network Indiana Indiana's Only Audio News Network. Network Indiana is dedicated to providing the state of Indiana important and useful information.

View all posts by this author »

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_LU7GWGEHBZCHHJYMN74M53VZQM Molly Maguires

    “He [an officer] looks in the window, sees a group of people cutting up cocaine or something, and realizes, ‘By the time I go get a warrant, come back, they’ll be gone.’ Because that is the commission of a crime at that point in time, he would be allowed to enter,” Lanane says.What a clueless hack! He’s a bad rerun of ‘The Shield’.
    Voters????

  • Rhondaleebaby69

    No, that is a crime.  Possession of an illegal substance.  No warrant necessary.  Put it this way…if an officer sees a guy breaking into an ATM, he can arrest the perpetrator.  No warrant necessary.

  • Rhondaleebaby69

    No, that is a crime.  Possession of an illegal substance.  No warrant necessary.  Put it this way…if an officer sees a guy breaking into an ATM, he can arrest the perpetrator.  No warrant necessary.

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Indiana Public Media News:

Support For Indiana Public Media Comes From

Search News

Stay Connected

RSS e-mail itunes Facebook Twitter Flickr YouTube

Follow us on Twitter

What is RSS? RSS makes it possible to subscribe to a website's updates instead of visiting it by delivering new posts to your RSS reader automatically. Choose to receive some or all of the updates from Indiana Public Media News:

Recent Politics Stories

Recent Videos

Find Us on Facebook