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Terry vs. Ohio, 392 US 1 (1968)
Whether or not the search and seizure were validly done in accordance with the 4th amendment.
Yes. The search is valid.
Under the Fourth Amendment, it provides that "the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated. . . ."
The Court held that the search undertaken by the officer was reasonable under the Fourth Amendment because it is the duty of an officer to investigate suspicious behavior and prevent crime. The Court found that the officer acted on more than a "hunch" and that "a reasonably prudent man would have been warranted in believing [Terry] was armed and thus presented a threat to the officer's safety while he was investigating his suspicious behavior."
The Court found that the searches were undertaken were limited in scope and designed to protect the officer's safety incident to the investigation.
Moreover, this case does not provide blanket authority to intrude on an individual’s right to be left alone, nor does it allow such intrusion based on a police offers inarticulate hunch that a crime is about to occur or is in progress. However, it does radically expand police authority to investigate crimes where there is a reasonable basis for suspicion.
The Supreme Court affirmed the conviction and set a precedent that allows police officers to interrogate and frisk suspicious individuals without probable cause for an arrest, providing that the officer can articulate a reasonable basis for the stop and frisk.