The Exclusionary Rule Of The United States Essay

The Exclusionary Rule Of The United States Essay

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The exclusionary rule is one of the utmost controversial rulings in our judicial system. The exclusionary rule can be best defined as “the principle based on federal Constitutional Law that evidence illegally seized by law enforcement officers in violation of a suspect 's right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures cannot be used against the suspect in a criminal prosecution.” (The Free Dictionary , 1981-2015) The exclusionary rule is not to be mistaken as being intertwined within the constitution for it is not a part of it, instead it is a remedy specially designed by the courts to reconcile violations against a defendant’s 4th amendment rights. Although it’s chief purpose maybe deeply rooted into the 4th amendment, but its protective nature branches out against violations of the 5th and 6th amendments which consist of protection against self-incrimination and the right to counsel respectively. Although there are cases of the exclusionary rule being used in the late 19th century, it was not until its inception in 1914 following the Weeks v. United States case that it became common practice. This case involved defendant Fremont Weeks who was convicted of transporting lottery tickets via mail. Police were able to apprehend him by entering his home and seizing papers, however this search was done without a warrant thus Weeks fought vigorously against the police for return of his illegally seized possessions. Upon further investigations the courts in a unanimous decision found that seizing of Weeks possessions and the failure of the police to return them to him was a direct infringement of Week’s 4th Amendment rights.
The Supreme Court’s objective in establishing the exclusionary rule was to ensure that the 4th amendm...


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...t be faced with a scenario where evidence was found in an illegal manner. If citizens are expected to follow the law, then law enforcement should be held to that same standard! Gathering evidence in a fashion that violates the 4th amendment is justifiably punished by the exclusionary rule. With the plentiful amount of exceptions made to the exclusionary rule, it is inexcusable
With all the exceptions that have been added to the exclusionary rule,
The effect that my position has on the daily activities of law enforcement officers is simply that they must conduct searches and seizures in accordance to the 4th amendment.

With all this in mind it’s obvious that if the exclusionary rule or the fruit of poisonous tree can be use, then evidence must have been obtain through an illegal fashion. It is imperative that a citizen’s constitutional right is always protected.

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