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Parole Searches in PA

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Parolees have a reduced expectation of privacy in PA.

By Attorney Elisabeth K.H. Pasqualini, Parole Attorney, Harrisburg, PA

Probationers and parolees have limited protections against warrantless or suspicionless searches.  A probationer's home can be searched by a probation officer without a warrant if "reasonable grounds" exist to support the search.  Where a probationer agrees to be the subject of a search, the case law has uniformly held that reasonable suspicion exists. 

However, the search must be reasonably related to the purpose for which the probationer is on supervision.  For instance, where a search conducted by a parole agent was for drugs, but the suspected violation was for a recent arrest, the search was not permissible.  Suppression may be a viable option for state parolees.  Further, police may not simply "tag along" on parole searches.  The police still have a probable cause standard for conducting warrantless searches and may not use the parole agents as a "stalking horse" to gain access to a parolee's residence.

If you are on probation or parole and have been subjected to a search of your person, car, or home and evidence has been seized, you should contact an experienced attorney before your next court date.  You may contact the attorneys at Shaffer & Engle Law Offices, LLC toll free or email us today.

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