The rule requiring exclusion from judicial proceedings of evidence illegally
seized by the police is an integral part of the Fourth Amendment. The
exclusionary rule serves the vitally important function of deterring governmental
agents and police from lawless conduct violative of the right of personal
security and privacy which the Fourth Amendment grants to every person
within the jurisdiction of the United States or of the individual states.
Moreover, the exclusionary rule engenders confidence in government by
preventing the courts from becoming participants in wilful disobedience
of the Constitution. Without the exclusionary rule the great mandate of
the Fourth Amendment would have little value or meaning and limited importance
to the maintenance of a free society.
drafted by Clyde Blackmon
FORUM, SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 1987, VOLUME 14, NO. 5