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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 6:59 am 
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I dunno if I'd run this case, but it sure seems to make sense.

The exclusionary rule is this evidence permissibly rule that says if evidence was obtained illegally, it can't be used in court. The idea is to discourage the police from illegally obtaining evidence.

I would argue that it fails in that regard. When police are obtaining evidence illegally, they probably either don't realize it's illegal or don't think they'll get caught. They know full well what the consequences of illegally obtaining evidence are, and they know they'll get punished if they're caught. That alone is enough of an incentive for them not to obtain info illegally. I don't see how whether or not the evidence will be used if they're found out could be a significant part of their calculations when they are deciding to break the law.

All the exclusionary rule accomplishes is obstruction of justice. Often evidence proving someone innocent is withheld because it was obtained illegally. So, just because the police made a mistake, an innocent person has to pay for it...sometimes with his life.

Here's a great article discussing the problems with the rule: http://scholarship.law.marquette.edu/cg ... ntext=mulr

Another potential case would be to abolish the rule, but set up a system to criminally prosecute policemen for unlawful searches and seizures at the same time.

What do you guys think? :)

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 8:00 am 
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Cyberknight wrote:
They know full well what the consequences of illegally obtaining evidence are, and they know they'll get punished if they're caught. That alone is enough of an incentive for them not to obtain info illegally. I don't see how whether or not the evidence will be used if they're found out could be a significant part of their calculations when they are deciding to break the law.


I'm not familiar enough with this case to give much more feedback, but this part isn't true. If the police were regularly caught and punished for that sort of thing, then maybe it would work as an disincentive for illegally obtaining evidence. Even then, I'd say it's not enough. Sometimes they are desperate to find anything to prove a hunch or theory, and will go to great lengths to find that. By allowing unconstitutionally obtained evidence to be used in the court room, you're neglecting a person's rights and completely disregarding the "innocent until proven guilty" concept. Plus, there would be virtually no reason not to obtain evidence in any way you wish if the exclusionary rule were not in place. Why waste time with a search warrant, when you can just find what you need and it be used against the suspect? Even the guilty have rights.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:46 pm 
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I'm not familiar enough with this case to give much more feedback, but this part isn't true. If the police were regularly caught and punished for that sort of thing, then maybe it would work as an disincentive for illegally obtaining evidence.

Yeah, that's the problem. Any case would have to include some sort of measure to punish policemen instead, but that would be kinda extra-topical.

Quote:
Even then, I'd say it's not enough. Sometimes they are desperate to find anything to prove a hunch or theory, and will go to great lengths to find that.

Wait, so you think they'd be willing to face serious consequences and lose their job just to get evidence to prove someone guilty? I doubt it. I think they imagine they won't get caught. Either that, or they aren't really thinking at all.

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By allowing unconstitutionally obtained evidence to be used in the court room, you're neglecting a person's rights and completely disregarding the "innocent until proven guilty" concept.

How so?

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 18, 2015 12:40 am 
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SavyAvy wrote:
By allowing unconstitutionally obtained evidence to be used in the court room, you're neglecting a person's rights and completely disregarding the "innocent until proven guilty" concept.

This isn't entirely true. For one, I'm not sure that the supreme court has made it the right of anyone to have evidence tossed out in court. Furthermore, it doesn't make much logical sense either, the crime was committed, should we penalize ourselves by having that evidence thrown out? Let's put it this way, suppose a criminal was caught and before the police read him his rights he confessed to the murder, presented the murder weapon, provided plenty of evidence that he had committed the crime. Is that evidence now off-limits and not acceptable in a court of law because he wasn't read his Miranda Rights first? In this hypothetical example, criminals could game the system (don't press me on this issue please, it is, after all, hypothetical).

This was actually one of the first cases I heard about this year and some of my club mates were interested in piloting it, so I did some research on the subject early.

I would argue Significance in light of several supreme court decisions: United States v. Leon (1984), Nix v. Williams (1984), and Stone v. Powell (1976). Here's a short excerpt from the fifteenth edition of "Essential Supreme Court Decisions: Summaries of Leading Cases in US Constitutional Law" by John R. Vile (I highly recommend the book as a reference manual for debate rounds).
Professor Vile on Page 314 (15th edition) wrote:
The Fourth Amendment does not specify what shall happen in cases where the government conducts illegal searches and seizures, but the Suprem Court has developed the exclusionary rule largely in an attempt to deter illegal police conduct in such cases. Originally applied only to the national government in Weeks v. United States (1914), the Court extended this rule to the states in Mapp v. Ohio (1961). Largely because this rule often results in the loss of probative evidence, since then the Court has carved out a number of exceptions, as when government officials act in reasonable good faith, United States v. Leon (1984), or when courts believe that information obtained in a search would otherwise have been the result of "inevitable discovery," Nix v. Williams (1984).
Hope you find that helpful!

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