Cite as: 514 U. S. 1 (1995)
Stevens, J., dissenting
its personnel to avoid future violations. See Stewart, The Road to Mapp v. Ohio and Beyond: The Origins, Development and Future of the Exclusionary Rule in Search-and-Seizure Cases, 83 Colum. L. Rev. 1365, 1400 (1983).
The exclusionary rule is not fairly characterized as an "extreme sanction," ante, at 11 (internal quotation marks omitted). As Justice Stewart cogently explained, the implementation of this constitutionally mandated sanction merely places the government in the same position as if it had not conducted the illegal search and seizure in the first place.1 Given the undisputed fact in this case that the Constitution prohibited the warrantless arrest of respondent, there is nothing "extreme" about the Arizona Supreme Court's conclusion that the State should not be permitted to profit from its negligent misconduct.
Even if one accepts deterrence as the sole rationale for the exclusionary rule, the Arizona Supreme Court's decision is correct on the merits. The majority's reliance on United States v. Leon, 468 U. S. 897 (1984), is misplaced. The search in that case had been authorized by a presumptively valid warrant issued by a California Superior Court Judge. In
1 See Stewart, The Road to Mapp v. Ohio and Beyond: The Origins, Development and Future of the Exclusionary Rule in Search-and-Seizure Cases, 83 Colum. L. Rev. 1365, 1392 (1983). I am fully aware of the Court's statements that the question whether the exclusionary rule should be applied is distinct from the question whether the Fourth Amendment has been violated. Indeed, the majority twice quotes the same statement from the Court's opinion in Illinois v. Gates, 462 U. S. 213, 223 (1983). See ante, at 10, 12. I would note that such eminent Members of this Court as Justices Holmes, Brandeis, Harlan, and Stewart have expressed the opposite view. See, e. g., Olmstead v. United States, 277 U. S. 438, 470 (1928) (Holmes, J., dissenting); id., at 477-479 (Brandeis, J., dissenting); Whiteley v. Warden, Wyo. State Penitentiary, 401 U. S. 560 (1971) (Harlan, J.); Elkins v. United States, 364 U. S. 206 (1960) (Stewart, J.); Stewart, supra, at 1383-1385. The majority today candidly acknowledges that Justice Harlan's opinion for the Court in Whiteley "treated identification of a Fourth Amendment violation as synonymous with application of the exclusionary rule to evidence secured incident to that violation." Ante, at 13.
19Page: Index Previous 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 Next
Last modified: October 4, 2007