Since the early 1990s, the Supreme Court has increased the influence of the police through a series of court cases. Atwater v. City of Lago Vista held that the Fourth Amendment does not forbid a warrantless arrest for a minor criminal offense punishable only by a fine. This case will be discussed as it relates to the current climate of policing and the Supreme Court. The potential implications for police and the public will also be addressed. © 2003, SAGE Publications. All rights reserved.