The exigent circumstances exception to the warrant requirement permits the police to enter a private residence, without prior judicial approval, whenever the police have an objectively reasonable basis for believing that the destruction of evidence is imminent or underway. The United States Supreme Court’s most recent pronouncement in the exigent circumstances realm—Kentucky v. King—is not a case about exigent circumstances per se. Instead, King concerns the “policecreated exigency” doctrine, a concept that the vast majority of federal and state courts already recognize.This doctrine adds a crucial caveat to the exigent circumstances rule, but it is not new. It provides that the police “may not rely on the need to prevent destruction of evidence when that exigency was ‘created’ or ‘manufactured’” by the police themselves.
Jamesa J. Drake,
Kentucky v. King: A New Approach to Consent-Based Police Encounters?,
Me. L. Rev.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.mainelaw.maine.edu/mlr/vol65/iss1/4