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  1. #1
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    Default Arrest Rights of Convicts

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Iowa

    What do police need to abduct a convicted felon? On TV crime shows, it looks like all that is needed is to locate such a person anywhere outside a licensed private address and simply tell them they are being detained until police decide otherwise. Bystanders will be indifferent if the cop says something about previous convictions. Am I missing something? If you would rather direct me to a FAQ for this likely common concern, please do!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting Cymulacra
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    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Iowa

    What do police need to abduct a convicted felon?
    Police have no more right to "abduct" someone than anyone else. Abduction is essentially similar to the crime of kidnapping.

    As for what the police need to arrest someone, under the federal Constitution the police merely need probable cause to believe the person to be arrested has committed some crime. Some states have statutes that further restrict when arrests may be made, for example limiting arrests to certain types of crimes.

    The police may need a warrant to enter the place where the person to be arrested is located. In general the warrant is needed when the arrested person is located in a place where the occupants would have an expectation of privacy (e.g. a private residence). There are exceptions, however, where a warrant would not be needed in those cirumstances. Note that the term you used, "licensed private address" is meaningless; the government does not "license" addresses or residences.

  3. #3
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    Apr 2014
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Your question is confusing. A convicted felon is someone who previously has been convicted or pled guilty in court to a felony. After that point there are three possible conditions, serving a sentence in prison, on probation/parole or completed their sentence. While on probation/parole there may be conditions imposed, which the felon agreed to, where police can search him, his residence or the immediate area to verify the release conditions are being met any time the police make contact with this person or have reason to believe they are not being met. Outside of the probation/parole conditions and restrictions on many felons like firearm possession, the police should treat them like any other person. Now, if there is an arrest or bench warrant for their arrest due to not meeting the conditions of probation/parole or they are wanted for another unrelated crime, the police are free to arrest them whenever they can find them. If there is credible reason to believe that a person with an arrest warrant is at a specific location, even a private residence, they are free to enter the residence for the sole purpose of taking that person into custody.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Are you referring to the scenarios where they go looking for a suspect, go see a convicted felon for information or they believe he did it, and then just shove him in a car and take him to the station?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting Cymulacra
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    What do police need to abduct a convicted felon?
    One online dictionary defines "abduct" as follows: "to carry off or lead away (a person) illegally and in secret or by force, especially to kidnap." Needless to say, no one -- not even police -- has a "right" to do that which is illegal. Of course, the relevant facts matter greatly in any legal analysis, and you provided no relevant facts (including whether or not the "convicted felon" in question is presently incarcerated, out on parole, or has fully completed his/her sentence, including any post-release obligations).


    Quote Quoting Cymulacra
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    On TV crime shows. . . .
    Which "TV crime shows"? You understand that most "TV crime shows" are works of fiction, right?


    Quote Quoting Cymulacra
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    Am I missing something?
    Yes. As mentioned, your post is wholly devoid of relevant facts.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting Cymulacra
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    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Iowa

    What do police need to abduct a convicted felon? On TV crime shows, it looks like all that is needed is to locate such a person anywhere outside a licensed private address and simply tell them they are being detained until police decide otherwise. Bystanders will be indifferent if the cop says something about previous convictions. Am I missing something? If you would rather direct me to a FAQ for this likely common concern, please do!
    A detention requires very little beyond a reasonable belief that the person is engaged in criminal activity. The bar for this burden is pretty low, and so long as the articulated cause is deemed "reasonable" it's good.

    But, no, the police cannot simply walk up to someone standing outside a residence or business and detain them. They need SOME reason to do so. Even on TV shows they most often detain people with cause.
    **********
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    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting cdwjava
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    Even on TV shows they most often detain people with cause.
    That's what technical advisors are for. As long as they don't hire Barney Fife.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting free9man
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    That's what technical advisors are for. As long as they don't hire Barney Fife.
    Sometimes I scream at those shows ... I mean ... a "187" in CHICAGO?! And, Hawaii Five-O is a law enforcement procedural and administrative disaster - even if it IS a fun show! I heard from a friend with LAPD that did some work in Hollywood who told me that when they point out that "187", "5150" or even "415" are California codes, he had been told that they are still used in cop shows from other places because at least the first two are recognizable codes to the audience. <sigh>
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting cdwjava
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    least the first two are recognizable codes to the audience. <sigh>
    That kinda makes sense but you can use unnecessary exposition, which tv shows love, to explain what a local code is. Just have the officer have to explain it to some bystander, the suspect, etc....

    Of course Hollyweird being Hollyweird, the explanation would probably consist of:
    Officer: You know what a 5150 is?
    Bystander: Oh yeah, that's a crazy person right?
    Officer: Well, X is our version of 5150.
    Bystander: Oooooooooh

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Arrest Rights of Convicts

    Quote Quoting free9man
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    That kinda makes sense but you can use unnecessary exposition, which tv shows love, to explain what a local code is. Just have the officer have to explain it to some bystander, the suspect, etc....

    Of course Hollyweird being Hollyweird, the explanation would probably consist of:
    Officer: You know what a 5150 is?
    Bystander: Oh yeah, that's a crazy person right?
    Officer: Well, X is our version of 5150.
    Bystander: Oooooooooh
    If only ... I hear the TV officers use it and the radios in cars and portables using CA codes with some regularity. It's ... annoying.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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