Motion To Suppress Definition and Legal Meaning
On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Motion To Suppress, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.
What is Motion To Suppress?
It refers to a request made by the defendant and his attornies to the court, that certain evidence be not presented or considered legal at the trial because it is believed by the defendant that the evidence has been obtained by the illegal means.eg. When drunk or drugged.
History and Meaning of Motion To Suppress
A Motion to Suppress is a legal term that refers to a request made by the defendant's attorney to the court to exclude certain evidence from trial because it was obtained through an illegal search or seizure. This type of motion is often made in cases where the defendant believes that their constitutional rights have been violated during the process. The exclusion of evidence can significantly impact the outcome of the case and often leads to a plea deal or a dismissal of charges.
The concept of a motion to suppress was established in the landmark case Mapp v. Ohio (1961), where the Supreme Court held that evidence obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment's prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizures cannot be used against a defendant in a criminal trial. From that point on, the exclusionary rule has been a powerful weapon for the defense in criminal cases.
Examples of Motion To Suppress
- In a drug trafficking case, a defendant's attorney files a motion to suppress certain evidence found in their client's car during a warrantless search.
- In a DUI case, a defendant's attorney files a motion to suppress the results of a breathalyzer test because the police officer did not properly administer the test.
- In a burglary case, a defendant's attorney files a motion to suppress a confession made by their client during an interrogation because the police did not read them their Miranda rights properly.
Legal Terms Similar to Motion To Suppress
- Exclusionary Rule: A legal principle that prohibits the use of illegally obtained evidence in a criminal trial.
- Fourth Amendment: A constitutional amendment that protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures.
- Probable Cause: A standard of reasonable belief, based on facts and circumstances, that is necessary to obtain a search warrant or make an arrest.