This week on the Writer's Detective Bureau, exigent circumstances, becoming a PI, and confidential informants. I'm Adam Richardson and this is the Writer's Detective Bureau.
Welcome to episode number 58 of the Writer's Detective Bureau, the podcast dedicated to helping authors and screenwriters write professional quality, crime-related fiction. And this week I'm answering your questions about when exigent circumstances allow a detective to circumvent a search warrant, the realities of leaving the police force to become a private investigator and how detectives procure confidential informants.
But before we get into that, as always, I need to thank my patrons on Patreon, especially my gold shield patrons, Debra Dunbar from debradunbar.com, C.C. Jameson from ccjameson.com, Larry Keeton, Vicki Tharp of vickitharp.com, Dharma Kelleher of dharmakelleher.com, Chrysann, Jimmy Cowe of Crimibox and Larry Darter for their support. I'd also like to thank all of my Coffee Club patrons for their support every single month and your support keeps the lights on in the bureau. You can find links to all of the writers supporting this episode in the show notes at writersdetective.com/58. And to learn about setting up your own Patreon account for your author business, visit writersdetective.com/patreon, P-A-T-R-E-O-N.
This week's first question comes from the Facebook group, which you can find by going to writersdetectivebureau.com/Facebook and that easy to remember link will take you to the private Facebook group called Writer's Detective Q&A. So Carol Ann Newsome of canewsome.com writes, "Adam, I'd love to know more about the rules of exigent circumstances. I'm thinking of a scenario in a book I just read where officers are waiting for a warrant outside of an estate where they have good reason to believe but have no proof, so in my mind that makes a warrant unlikely, that a man is being tortured and killed inside. Should they break in and rescue the man? And what trouble would they face? Could a defense attorney make the case that the victim's testimony and evidence of assault on his body along with all the serial killer's tools be deemed fruit of the poisonous tree? And if you cover this on the podcast, I hope you will talk about ways of use and misuse of exigent circumstances can affect a case."
I will do just that, Carol Ann. To start with, the Cornell Law Dictionary defines exigent circumstances as circumstances that would cause a reasonable person to believe the entry or other relevant prompt action was necessary to prevent physical harm to the officers or other persons, the destruction of relevant evidence, the escape of a suspect or some other consequence improperly frustrating legitimate law enforcement efforts. And the exclusionary rule is what Carol Ann is referring to when she mentioned fruit of the poisonous tree. Cornell Law says the exclusionary rule prevents... Continue reading...
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