Police Powers of Arrest

A police officer must follow all required constitutional safeguards; therefore he must have probable cause to make a valid arrest or must possess a valid arrest warrant. The only instance where an officer may not may an arrest is if:

  • they do not possess the requisite probable cause;
  • they are outside their jurisdiction (for which they are credentialed).

When Can an Arrest be Made?

An officer can make a valid arrest of an individual if they have a valid arrest warrant. A police officer can arrest you WITHOUT an arrest warrant if they have “probable cause” – or if they personally observe an individual commit a crime.

The police can use reasonable force to arrest you if you resist or in any other way try to avoid being arrested.

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