Police want to search my home in murder investigation

So according to this Toronto Star newspaper article, the local PD is going to be conducting a massive search of my neighborhood looking for a girl whose been missing for over one month.

“You will expect a knock at your door and police will keep knocking at your door,” Det. Sgt. Dan Nealon told a news conference. “We’re also asking to be invited into your home just for a quick peek into areas of your home to ensure that there is no evidence … and we can move on.”

I live with my parents so the decision is pretty much up to them, but if the police try to interview me or search the house while I’m home alone I will politely decline. I don’t approve of the tactic of a massive invasive search and don’t wish to cooperate with such an endeavor.

What would you do in such a situation?

I have nothing to hide, so would let them check, instead of wasting time that could be better spent in looking for the girl or whoever took her.

I don’t have anything to hide either. And it’s not like they have some kind of nefarious intent–looking for a missing girl or evidence associated with that is something very important that affects us all. I hope that if I or anyone I love are taken, god forbid, that everything will be done to search us down.

US law, they can’t do that. Canuckistan may be different.

I may have nothing to hide, but they’re not getting any freebies, either. “Get a warrant, or go to Hell.”

twickster has a very good point. I disapprove of what they’re doing (and don’t feel its an effective way to find a murderer) but I don’t particularly want to waste their time. I guess it boils down to speculating over how they plan to proceed with those of us who want to stand up for our rights.

VunderBob: I think we share a similar point of view. I would suggest that what the police are doing here would be perfectly legal in the USA too. They’re going door to door and asking to people to voluntarily consider inviting them in to do a brief search. Why do you think this couldn’t happen state-side?

It may very well be legal to ask in the States, but they sure as hell are not just coming in to come in. Just because I have nothing to hide doesn’t mean I want the police wandering around my house just because they want to.

But is it really worth the hassle of getting on their ‘suspect list’? Presumably the cops assume there are lots of people that wish to stand up for their civil liberties. Still dunno what, if any, ramifications the action might have. Presumably nothing will happen though.

I’d let them in. I have nothing to hide, nor am I any longer a teenager who feels the need to argue with the cops about my “rights.” If a kid is missing, I’m doing to do what I can to help find the kid. That doesn’t violate my rights. Let’s keep our on the ball. The goal of the cops is not to oppress you, but to find a missing kid.

If MY kid is missing, I’ll be kicking doors down my damn self.

That’s exceedingly creepy. Why the devil would I allow the police in my home? I know I didn’t kidnap anyone. What kind of evidence are they hoping to find in the homes of the innocent?

If they want to knock on my door and ask if I saw anything that day, show me a photo, of course I’m going to be succinct, polite, and do my best to help them but I’m at a loss as to why I should admit the authorities into my home without a warrant.

Aren’t they wasting a metric fuckton of time and resources by searching that many homes? I’m pretty sure the poor gal wasn’t kidnapped by a township or even a city block.

Eliminating suspects is normal police methdology. All they’re trying to do is remove you as a suspect. Acting like a butthurt civil rights crusader at the door not only impedes the search for a missing kid, but it does not even eliminate you as a suspect. Why not just be a grown up and put a more important goal ahead of your self-absorbed terrorialism?

dangit dopers! can you all kindly come to a consensus before sharing your opinions with me? All these solid lines of thought on both sides of the argument are not making the decision for me!

The right thing to do is help the cops eliminate you as a suspect so they can narrow the search for the kid. Just because you can say no, doesn’t mean it’s the ethically preferable thing to do.

Having nothing to hide is irrelevant to whether the police are allowed into my home without a court order.

I don’t care if someone hid the Little Baby Jesus under my coffee table without my knowledge.

If you don’t get a warrant, you are not coming in. I have to jump through whatever hoops I am legally obligated to, and the police have to jump through theirs.

I would not be given a freeby and they don’t get one either. Get a warrant.

I’d be happy to let them in purely to look for a missing child. The problem is that cops can lie. They could promise they’re looking for the child only, and then cite me for having illegal fireworks or something, and I couldn’t do anything about it. When cops routinely lie to and manipulate suspects, it’s hard to trust them even when you want to help.

If there was some firm legal guarantee that they could only use evidence that relates to the case they’ve asked for help with, I would do it. As it is, I’m not sure.

I don’t know what I would do. On the one hand, I feel bad for the missing girl’s family, and I hope she’s ok and found soon, wherever she is. On the other, is has been more than a month. This isn’t a case of “kids goes missing at 2, search the neighbourhood at 4”…time isn’t really of the essence anymore, is it? If there is evidence here today, it will be there tomorrow, after the police get a warrant.

I think I’d ask the police officers at the door what they feel they will gain by searching my home. What reason do they have to suspect that I have anything to hide? Show me pictures of the girl, ask me where I was on the day she went missing…fine. But search my home? I don’t think I’d be comfortable with that. I guess I’d see how they reacted, and what kind of search they wanted to do. But odds are I’d ask them to wait while I called one of my many uncles who are lawyers, or my cousin, the RCMP detective, and see what advice I received from them first!

In the OP’s case, since you have warning from the media that this is going to happen, see if you can get legal advice first, and make your decision based upon that.

I disapprove of what they’re doing, and I wouldn’t be interested in encouraging it in the future either. If they want to waste their time and effort directing further investigations at me because I wouldn’t let them wander around my house, that’s their problem, not mine. They should learn to do their jobs, and realize that they’re wasting their time with the entire exercise in the first place.

If they suspect me, they can get a warrant. The fact that they’re asking when they don’t have a warrant means right away that they have no reason to connect me with the crime. That should be the end of it, period.

They can get a warrant if they’d like to search my home. I’ve little to hide that any normal beat cop would notice, but they have no right to rifle through my home with no reason. I don’t want to have to explain every odd thing that I have in my home to a nosy cop who has no legitimate reason to be in my home other than the fact that I happen to live in a certain geographical area. Further, for a search to be thorough, they’d have to check in closets, under beds, and anywhere a small child might concieveably hide. That is not “quick”. The longer they are there, the more things they can check off on their list of “things to check up on later”( hmm Acid Lamp has a hookah, I bet he’s a reefer smoker…Wow, is that a real mini gun displayed on the coffee table?). I’m not going to add myself to the list of a nitpicker cop just to be helpful.

Fuck them and their shady as fuck tactic. It’s completely useless and they are already wasting their time going door to door. Whoever has/had the kid isn’t going to let them find the kid in their home.

Glad they wouldn’t even ask to do such a thing in the US so that I will never be in your position. I’ll just have to tell them, “Fuck off, 4th amendment.”, when they want to abuse the metropolitan transit authority’s transit monopoly to abolish my constitutional protections.

As a card-carrying member of the ACLU, I know that I should probably refuse to let them in my house, but in this case it wouldn’t really bother me and I would let them in to take a look.

ETA: I would feel better about this search if the police could show any evidence that they have good reason to believe that the missing 18-year-old is sequestered somewhere in the vicinity of my house.

I suppose the first thing I’d do is wonder why they’re broadcasting in advance that they want to search everyone’s home. “Hey, abductor! If there’s any shit in your home related to this little girl you better git rid of it quick!” :rolleyes:

The second thing I’d do is let them search, for all the reasons given. Refusing only puts you on their potential suspect list, making their job harder and spreading their resources even thinner by having to check you out too.