Cutting Cops Too Much Slack

8 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2015

See all articles by Wayne A. Logan

Wayne A. Logan

Florida State University - College of Law

Date Written: September 15, 2015


While most citizens would likely regard being seized by police when they have committed no legal wrong as the epitome of the unreasonable behavior prohibited by the Fourth Amendment, recently the Supreme Court concluded otherwise. In Heien v. North Carolina, an 8-1 majority upheld a traffic stop based on what the Court viewed as an officer’s reasonable misunderstanding of a state traffic law, resulting in admission of drugs thereafter discovered. This essay critiques Heien and considers its many important implications.

Keywords: policiing, Fourth Amendment, mistake of law, rule of law

Suggested Citation

Logan, Wayne A., Cutting Cops Too Much Slack (September 15, 2015). Georgetown Law Journal Online, Vol. 104, 2015, Forthcoming, FSU College of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 771, Available at SSRN:

Wayne A. Logan (Contact Author)

Florida State University - College of Law ( email )

425 W. Jefferson Street
Tallahassee, FL 32306
United States

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