Suppressing Criminal Evidence Inhibits Police Officers From Violating Rights
Criminal defense Lawyers have been moving to suppress illegally obtained evidence to a far greater extent following the defining of our constitutional rights. A vast majority of the law involving our rights were handed down by the criminal appellate and United States Supreme Court during the 1960s. The concept is straight forward in that it relies on the exclusionary rule to prevent a criminal prosecutor from using evidence that was obtained illegally (or by violating a suspect’s rights). The exclusion of illegally obtained evidence designed to inhibit law enforcement from violating the constitutional protections afforded to us all.
For more information about Motions to Suppress in Drunk Driving Cases, ask for a copy of excerpts from our past DUI Defense Seminars.
Criminal Lawyer Hypothetical Analysis
Where a criminal investigator examines the contents of a woman’s handbag and discovers illegal drugs, that officer can’t use what he has learned nor the actual narcotics confiscated in order to seek a conviction. The severity of the crime or level of incriminating evidence is of no consequence. Criminal defense Lawyers know that upon filing a motion to suppress and succeeding, the evidence will be ruled inadmissible as being the product of an illegal search.
Criminal defense Lawyer asserts the rights of his or her client, the court would be forced to grant the motion as a matter of criminal procedure. Where the evidence suppress was vital to the criminal prosecutor’s case, the charges would be dismissed by the State Lawyer’s Office. Where a violation of rights is tantamount to a gross disregarding of the law, criminal detectives involved may be sanctioned, suspended or even terminated.
Criminal lawyers explain that illegal searches are generally the result of warrantless searches conducted on the part of a criminal investigator. Such searches as a rule require that probable cause exist and that this probable cause be easily articulated by the officer.
Criminal Defense Hypothetical Explanation
Suspect is detained by a criminal investigator upon leaving a mall. The officer stopping suspect did so because he observed suspect looking in one of his shopping bags as he exited the store. Upon detaining the individual, the officer searched the defendants bag and found property in which the suspect did not have a receipt for. Within an hour, law enforcement determines that the items were in fact stolen.
This evidence is properly suppressible by defendant’s criminal defense Lawyer. While initial contact with the defendant may have been proper, the searching of his bags without probable cause was illegal. Furthermore, the detention of the suspect for an hour pending the investigation of his belongings was also illegal.