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Are Our Rights for Proper Search Warrants in Jeopardy?

| Nov 6, 2014 | Federal Crimes |

For many years the Minnesota Supreme Court has refused to recognize the “Good Faith” exception to the requirement that search warrants must be supported by probable cause set forth in the affidavit that is submitted to the Judge that issues the search warrant. The federal courts and a number of state courts have recognized that judicially constructed exception to the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unlawful search and seizures.

Stand by: Justice Stras is working on doing away with that right that all of us have in this state. The right to have a proper warrant issued before we can have our homes searched. He has asked enough questions and propounded enough hypotheticals to signal his feelings. He wants the protection done away with. Like those Supreme Court Justices that he is a student of, e.g. Thomas, Scalia and Alito, he apparently believes that if a cop thinks his warrant is proper, it doesn’t matter if it is not proper, the evidence seized should be able to be used. The Court, as currently constituted, is, by my handicapping, 8 to 5 to agree with the opinion that I predict is fulminating.

We, who labor in these fields of representing those accused of crime, are used to a rather draconian approach that has infected our Court in recent years since we have lost a number of Judges that counted themselves as protectors of our constitutional rights. We can only hope the Dayton appointees carry a copy of the Constitution around in their back pocket, like I do. I doubt it but, I can hope, Can’t I?