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Exclusionary Rule for Police Lies

NCJ Number
American Criminal Law Review Volume: 47 Issue: 1 Dated: Winter 2010 Pages: 1-55
Melanie D. Wilson
Date Published
55 pages
This article examines how the current legal system handles police officer testimony, especially in the case of officers who lie.
The U.S. legal system regards police officers as impartial fact gatherers, trained to collect facts that support both guilt and innocence. According to the author, this perception is far from the truth and that in reality, police officers are biased advocates attempting to disprove innocence. This article examines the current legal system in the United States and presents arguments to show that the system should be changed to provide the structure necessary to promote honest police work. The article is divided into three parts. Part I has two sections that provide A) evidence of police lies and B) the effects of police lies. Part II provides evidence of the U.S. Supreme Courts treatment of police lies and its application of the exclusionary rule. Part III discusses the difference between "good" police lies and "bad" police lies, and presents evidence to modify the existing exclusionary rule to reduce the number of "bad" lies told by police officers.