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Police Supervisors Must Actually Read Search Warrants
The officers who lead a team that executes a warrant are responsible for
ensuring that they have lawful authority for their actions. . . . They
must actually read the warrant and satisfy themselves that they understand
its scope and limitations, and that it is not defective in some obvious
way. . . .
Line officers, on the other hand, are required to do much less. They do
not have to actually read or even see the warrant; they may accept the word
of their superiors that they have a warrant and that it is valid. . . . So
long as they "mak[e] inquiry as to the nature and scope of [the] warrant,"
. . . their reliance on leaders' representations about it is reasonable.
See: Ramirez v. Butte-Silver Bow County, 283 F.3d 985 (9th Cir. 2002).
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