Legal Advice from Jay Z

Everthing you know about US law is probably based on some horrible combination of Reno 911SuperTroopers, and Judge Joe Brown, so you're already screwed, but if you're taking legal advice from Jay Z you might need to do a bit of homework.

Posted on 7/17/2012

Via Andrew Sullivan, law prof Caleb Mason breaks down the legal advice in Jay Z's hit 99 Problems:

Do you mind if I look around the car a little bit?"/"Well, my glove compartment is locked, so is the trunk and the back,/And I know my rights so you go'n need a warrant for that

If this Essay serves no other purpose, I hope it serves to debunk, for any readers who persist in believing it, the myth that locking your trunk will keep the cops from searching it. Based on the number of my students who arrived at law school believing that if you lock your trunk and glove compartment, the police will need a warrant to search them, I surmise that it's even more widespread among the lay public. But it's completely, 100% wrong. There is no warrant requirement for car searches. The Supreme Court has declared unequivocally that because cars are inherently mobile (and are pervasively regulated, and operated in public spaces), it is reasonable under the Fourth Amendment for the police to search the car-the whole car, and everything in the car, including containers-whenever they have probable cause to believe that the car contains evidence of crime. ... What the line should say is: "You'll need some p.c. for that." 


Gawker has the full line by line breakdown, which is incredibly excellent.


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