The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures. Police officers can’t simply walk up to any citizen and detain or arrest that person. There must be reasonable suspicion or probable cause that the person has, is, or is committing a crime in order to detain or arrest them.
Typically, if a police officer wants to make an arrest, they must seek an arrest warrant. In order to obtain an arrest warrant, the officer must establish to a judge that there is probable cause that a crime occurred and that the defendant committed the crime. The judge will then issue an arrest warrant if the judge determines there is probable cause exists.
However, a police officer does not always have to obtain an arrest warrant in order to make an arrest. There are exceptions to the arrest warrant requirement. Florida Statute §901.15 lays out when an officer can make an arrest without an arrest warrant. There are many exceptions to the arrest warrant requirement. For example, an officer doesn’t need a warrant to arrest a person for driving under the influence. The officer can simply make the arrest once observing all of the elements of the offense.