Confessions and the Constitution

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Confessions and the Constitution

Where the increasing amounts of technology are constantly aiding in finding criminals and suspects, nothing has proven to hold up in court better than a confession. Although, there are rules and regulations as to how these confession will be allowed to be admitted into court, just like in all things. These rules and regulations are defined pretty clearly in the fourth, fifth, and sixth amendments of the constitution.

In the Fourth Amendment, it is said that it is “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.” Basically, this is saying that the person is protected against unreasonable searches and seizures. If this should occur, the remedy of suppression is put into act. Simply put, it means that evidence obtained in violation of the fourth amendment is not admissible in court, this includes verbal evidence. I agree with this to some extent. Granted, if someone goes rummaging thorough peoples closets and drawers without a warrant then it should be inadmissible, but if someone verbally admits to a crime under false pretenses, such as in the Kaupp case where he was arrested without probable cause, then it should still be admissible.

The Fifth Amendment states “no person … shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself.” When someone “pleads the fifth” they are protecting themselves against self-incrimination. The Miranda warning is supposed to advise you of this, that way if you incriminate yourself after, they can’t say they didn’t warn you. If someone is not advised of this, then something like the Patane case can occur. Patane was arrested for illegal possession of a handgun. The officer failed to deliver his Miranda rights and Patane tried to use this in court to get his gun returned to him and for the charges to be dismissed. It was determined that his statement was not in violation of the...
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