The Court's Protection of Criminal Rights.
The basis of American society is rooted within the people's possession and the government's protection of civil rights and liberties. These principles, granted and guaranteed in the constitution, form the democratic foundation of the country. Among the most important rights to the United States" democratic society are the rights to a reasonable expectation of privacy, granted in the Fourth Amendment, and equal representation under the law, as seen in the Fifth Amendment. Although the necessity of such provisions to the growth and prosperity of a democratic society is hardly disputable, the extent to which their protections extend is a topic of great controversy.
During the civil rights movement of the 1960s, the constitutional protection of criminal defendants was greatly augmented by the Supreme Court headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren through a series of rulings. (Schwarz, 2003, 72) As the social and political events changed over time, so did the Court's stand on the protection of these freedoms. In concordance with the changing times and ideals, the public's view as to how far such rights should extend still fuels the argument as to how far the courts should extend the constitution's protection of criminal rights.
Reasonable Expectation of Privacy.
Under the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution, the "right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated." Without probable cause or a warrant that specifies the object which is to be seized and the location of the site that is to be searched, police are not permitted to search one's private property (Amendments to the Constitution, 2003). This constitutional right to privacy is an attempt to establish a balance of an "individual's reasonable expectation of privacy and society's right to control crime and protect the public.