Police are normally not permitted to break down one’s door or use excessive force. They are supposed to employ the “knock and announce” rule, where they known on one’s door iike any other visitor and announce their presence. Police can make forced entry if: they have “probable cause” or a search warrant and you fail or refuse to open the door to lelt them in.
They must first wait, however, to allow you sufficient time to open the door. The United States Supreme Court has issued a variety of opinions citing that police may have to wait as long as 15-20 minutues, but if you are home and fail/refuse to allow them entry, they will eventually force their way in – rest assured.
Police can also make forced entry under limited circumstances such as for:
- medical emergencies
- if they probable cause to believe evidence may be in the process of being destroyed;
- if they believe someone may be in danger or injured and is in need of assistance.