WEEKS v. UNITED STATES

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Case Basics
Docket No. 
461
Petitioner 
Weeks
Respondent 
United States
Term:
Facts of the Case 

Police entered the home of Fremont Weeks and seized papers which were used to convict him of transporting lottery tickets through the mail. This was done without a search warrant. Weeks took action against the police and petitioned for the return of his private possessions.

Question 

Did the search and seizure of Weeks' home violate the Fourth Amendment?

Conclusion 

In a unanimous decision, the Court held that the seizure of items from Weeks' residence directly violated his constitutional rights. The Court also held that the government's refusal to return Weeks' possessions violated the Fourth Amendment. To allow private documents to be seized and then held as evidence against citizens would have meant that the protection of the Fourth Amendment declaring the right to be secure against such searches and seizures would be of no value whatsoever. This was the first application of what eventually became known as the "exclusionary rule."

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WEEKS v. UNITED STATES. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 20 September 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1913/1913_461>.
WEEKS v. UNITED STATES, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1913/1913_461 (last visited September 20, 2014).
"WEEKS v. UNITED STATES," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed September 20, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1901-1939/1913/1913_461.