CASENOTE: THE SUPREME COURT APPROVES ROADBLOCKS THAT ASSIST WITH CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS: HOW FAR CAN LAW ENFORCEMENT GO?: ILLINOIS V. LIDSTER, 124 S. CT. 885 (2004) Skip over navigation
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Copyright (c) 2004 Board of Trustees of Southern Illinois University
Southern Illinois University Law Journal

CASENOTE: THE SUPREME COURT APPROVES ROADBLOCKS THAT ASSIST WITH CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS: HOW FAR CAN LAW ENFORCEMENT GO?: ILLINOIS V. LIDSTER, 124 S. CT. 885 (2004)

Fall, 2004

29 S. Ill. U. L. J. 185

Author

Daniel J. Lee *

Excerpt

I. INTRODUCTION

The American public has the right to feel that their privacy and possessions are free from unreasonable searches and seizures prohibited by the Fourth Amendment. 1 However, it would also be fair to say that most Americans have an interest in assisting police officers in investigating local crimes. Both of these interests could be relevant during a police roadblock. In 2000, the United States Supreme Court addressed an issue regarding the constitutionality of roadblocks in Indianapolis v. Edmond. 2 Edmond held the Fourth Amendment forbids police to make stops without individualized suspicion at a checkpoint set up primarily for general crime control purposes. 3 After Edmond, the United States Supreme Court in Illinois v. Lidster, 4 held the police could set up a roadblock and question the occupants for information regarding a crime committed in that area.

The Supreme Court distinguished its holding in Lidster from Edmond, reasoning that the roadblock's primary law enforcement purpose was not to determine whether a crime was being committed, but to ask the public for information regarding a crime committed in that area. 5 The Court also briefly applied the Brown v. Texas 6 test and determined the roadblock was reasonable because its interference was not severe, and it was outweighed by the public's concern to find information of the crime. 7 Since roadblocks set up for informational purposes were held legal in Lidster, many scholars debate how far the effects of the Court's ruling will go. ...
 
 
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