In general, Jacksonville police officers cannot search a house without a warrant. However, there are exceptions to the rule. On exception to the Jacksonville Florida requirement that a warrant is need for a search is the “protective sweep.”
When police officers make an arrest in a house, they “may as a ‘precautionary matter and without probable cause or reasonable suspicion, look in closets and other spaces immediately adjoining the place of arrest from which an attack could be immediately launched.'” Rogers v. State, 36 Fla. L. Weekly D725b (Fla. 4th DCA 2011)(citing Maryland v. Buie, 494 U.S. 325, 334 (1990)). This is known as a protective sweep and cannot go any further than necessary to protect the officers from harm. For a protective sweep to go further, “there must be articulable facts which, taken together with the rational inferences from those facts, would warrant a reasonably prudent officer in believing that the area to be swept harbors an individual posing a danger to those on the arrest scene.” Buie, 494 U.S. at 334
When the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office conducts a search of a house using the protective sweep exception, it must follow the law as set forth in Florida cases such as Rogers v. State.