Private property is certainly an important concept in Texas. At the same time, so is authority. People know that they are supposed to follow the law and that police officers are in a position of authority.
But these two issues can collide if police officers arrive at your home and want to come inside and look around. Perhaps they think you have marijuana or other illegal drugs in the house. This is your private property, but do you have to let the police inside?
Ask them if they have a warrant
If the police request to come inside, what they’re hoping is that you will give them your consent. But never assume that you have to do so. You can decide if you want to give them consent or not, and they can’t arrest you just for telling them that you don’t want them to enter the home.
Instead, you should ask them if they have a search warrant. If they do, then they don’t need your consent. They may have asked for it initially, but they can still come inside with the warrant.
Ask to see that warrant so that you can read it and ensure that it is for the correct property. You can also look at any restrictions in the warrant, which may tell the police what type of evidence they are supposed to search for or what parts of your property they are actually allowed to enter.
Have the police violated your rights?
If you’ve been arrested, you may feel that the police violated your rights, perhaps by conducting an illegal search or arresting you simply for exercising your rights and telling them not to come inside. If so, it’s very important to look into your legal options.