By Julian A. Cook III

On June 20, 2016, the United States Supreme Court decided Utah v. Strieff, a case that has received little public attention yet carries enormous implications. The case centered upon the exclusionary rule, which, as a general matter, provides that derivative evidence seized in violation of an individual’s Fourth Amendment rights is inadmissible at that individual’s criminal trial. Shortly after leaving a house that an officer suspected housed illegal narcotics activity, Strieff was stopped by an officer in the absence of reasonable suspicion. Moments later, the officer contacted police dispatch, who informed him that Strieff had an outstanding arrest warrant. Thereafter, Strieff was arrested, and a search of his person uncovered “methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.” Given the unconstitutionality of his initial detention, Strieff argued that the exclusionary rule mandated the exclusion of evidence seized from his person.

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Recommended Citation
Julian A. Cook III, The Wrong Decision at the Wrong Time: Utah v. Strieff in the Era of Aggressive Policin, 70 SMU L. Rev. 293 (2017)