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Katz and the Fourth Amendment: A Reasonable Expectation of Privacy or, a Man's Home Is His Fort


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While there are a great many cases and commentaries treating fourth amendment rights, little attention has been given to the circumstances that must exist in order for it to be said that a search and seizure has taken place. The purpose of this note is to explore the issues involved in determining when the conduct of law enforcement officers constitutes a search and seizure. Consideration will be given to Katz v. United States, which established the test to be applied in making this determination; to the application of Katz and its effect upon fourth amendment protections; to alternatives for the preservation of fourth amendment rights; and to the necessity for stringent enforcement of fourth amendment prohibitions.