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The Exclusionary Rule

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The exclusionary is a rule in the American legal justice system that provides that where the evidence has been obtained illegally, that is the violation of the person’s fourth amendment, and such evidence is prohibited from being used on trial against a defendant (Roleff, 2003). The exclusionary law is just applied in cases that violate the fourth amendment provision on the right against unreasonable seizures and searches or without the requirement of a search warrant or a warrant of arrest. The exclusionary law does not relate to the violation of any other right covered in other provisions of the Constitution. For example: if an officer interrogates a suspect without reciting the Miranda’s warning, the suspect’s right under the Fifth Amendment is violated and the evidence is inadmissible in the court, and it cannot be suppressed in this rule.

The exclusionary law was formed by the Supreme Court in 1914 in weeks vs. the United States case, so it’s consequently a judge made law. The aim of this rule is to make sure that the fourth amendment is complied with the police officers that should get a search warrant before the conduct of any search and seizures (Ferdico, 2005). 

The exclusionary rule can be modified, courts came up with certain decisions where the evidence was admitted even if it was illegally acquired (against the suspect’s fourth amendment right), and these situations are the exclusions based on the exclusionary rule. Evidence that was obtained illegally from the suspect will be considered in court if the officer was acting in the good faith, but in this exception the officer is required to be honest and has objectively reasonable belief that the action was legitimate. The other exception is the inevitable discovery exception if the police prove that the evidence they obtained is in breach of a suspect’s right. They would have obtained it anyway legally. 

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