Suppression of Evidence Lawyers
The Police Performed an Illegal Search and Obtained Evidence, How Can I Suppress It?
Evidence that is obtained through an illegal search cannot be used as direct evidence against the victim of the illegal search at trial. This is known as the exclusionary rule. It may be necessary to make a motion to suppress the evidence in order to keep it form being admitted at trial.
If I Get the Evidence Suppressed, Does That Mean the Cases is Over?
No. The police may have other evidence against you. If the evidence that is suppressed is not crucial, it is still possible for the police and prosecutor to go forward with the case.
If I Get the Evidence Suppressed, Does That Mean no One Will Know About it?Not necessarily. While the evidence cannot be used as direct evidence at trial, there are possible situations where the evidence can still be used. These situations include:
- A judge can consider the evidence when determining a sentence for the individual
- The evidence can be admitted in civil and deportation cases
- In some situations, the evidence can be used to impeach or discredit a witness who testifies at trial
Can I Suppress Any Other Evidence?
Yes, there are other types of evidence that you can suppress. Related to the exclusionary rule is the fruit of the poisonous tree doctrine. According to this doctrine, any evidence that is discovered based upon the results of an illegal search cannot be used against you at trial. For example, if an officer illegally searches your car and finds a note with an address on it where you have counterfeit money stored, the money cannot be admitted as evidence at trial. The illegal search of the car and the finding of the note are the "poisonous tree," while the counterfeit money is the "fruit"
Can the "Fruits" of an Illegal search Ever Be Used Against Me?
There are three exceptions to the fruit of the poisonous tree doctrine. First, evidence that has become sufficiently attenuated from the illegal search is admissible. In other words, if the evidence is purged of its taint or the connection between the illegal search and the evidence is sufficiently weak, the evidence is admissible. Second, if the police would have inevitably discovered the evidence (i.e., would have found it with or without the illegal search), then it is admissible. Third, if the evidence is discovered through an independent, untainted source, it is admissible.
I Want to Suppress Evidence That the Police Have Against Me, Do I Need A Lawyer?
Knowing what evidence can be suppressed and how to suppress it are complicated issues. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can help you with the process and advise you of your rights and defenses. Anytime you are accused of committing a crime, you should consult a lawyer immediately.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 12-02-2010 12:00 PM PST
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