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Anderson v. Creighton

483 U.S. 635 (1987)

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Anderson v. Creighton

United States Supreme Court

483 U.S. 635 (1987)

Facts

Russell Anderson (defendant) was a Federal Bureau of Investigation agent who searched the family home of the Creightons (plaintiffs) without a warrant because he believed a bank-robbery suspect was hiding inside. The suspect was not found during the search. The Creightons sued Anderson in state court for damages, alleging the search was unconstitutional without a warrant. Anderson removed the case to federal court and filed a motion for summary judgment, arguing that the claim was barred by Anderson’s qualified immunity from civil liability. The district court granted the motion, holding that Anderson did have probable cause to search the home without a warrant because exigent circumstances existed. The court of appeals reversed, holding that the officer was not entitled to qualified immunity because the Fourth Amendment right to be free from warrantless searches was clearly established. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Scalia, J.)

Dissent (Stevens, J.)

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