WOLF v. COLORADO

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Case Basics
Docket No. 
17
Petitioner 
Wolf
Respondent 
Colorado
Opinion 
Term:
Facts of the Case 

The Colorado Supreme Court upheld a number of convictions in which evidence was admitted that would have been inadmissible in a prosecution for violation of a federal law in a federal court.

Question 

Were the states required to exclude illegally seized evidence from trial under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments?

Conclusion 

In a 6-to-3 decision, the Court held that the Fourteenth Amendment did not subject criminal justice in the states to specific limitations and that illegally obtained evidence did not have to be excluded from trials in all cases. The Court reasoned that while the exclusion of evidence may have been an effective way to deter unreasonable searches, other methods could be equally effective and would not fall below the minimal standards assured by the Due Process Clause. Civil remedies, such as "the internal discipline of the police, under the eyes of an alert public opinion," were sufficient.

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WOLF v. COLORADO. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 20 October 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/1940-1949/1948/1948_17>.
WOLF v. COLORADO, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1940-1949/1948/1948_17 (last visited October 20, 2014).
"WOLF v. COLORADO," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed October 20, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/1940-1949/1948/1948_17.