Legal Question in Criminal Law in Pennsylvania

Search Warrant

I recently asked if a Search Warrant issued by phone need to be signed?

I just received a copy of the search warrant from my lawyer and in addition to no signature there is no time and date on the warrant. There also is no seal on the document.

Is this a legal document my lawyer has, because it doesnt seem right to me.

Asked on 1/31/08, 5:17 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

John Gibson John W. Gibson, Esquire

Re: Search Warrant

It may be a copy provided by your attorney. The original should be signed by a Judicial Officer.

It's Rule 205 of Title 234 of the Pa. Code:

Each search warrant shall be signed by the issuing authority and shall:

(1) specify the date and time of issuance;

(2) identify specifically the property to be seized;

(3) name or describe with particularity the person or place to be searched;

(4) direct that the search be executed either;

(a) within a specified period of time, not to exceed 2 days from the time of issuance, or;

(b) when the warrant is issued for a prospective event, only after the specified event has occurred;

(5) direct that the warrant be served in the daytime unless otherwise authorized on the warrant, provided that, for purposes of the rules of Chapter 200. Part A, the term ‘‘daytime’’ shall be used to mean the hours of 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.;

(6) designate by title the judicial officer to whom the warrant shall be returned;

(7) certify that the issuing authority has found probable cause based upon the facts sworn to or affirmed before the issuing authority by written affidavit(s) attached to the warrant; and

(8) when applicable, certify on the face of the warrant that for good cause shown the affidavit(s) is sealed pursuant to Rule 211 and state the length of time the affidavit(s) will be sealed.

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Answered on 2/08/08, 2:39 pm

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