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Criminal Justice


As this article explores, while the Fourth Amendment is commonly criticized for the discretion it affords police officers, an overlooked result of the amendment’s lax regulation of the police is the enhanced power it affords prosecutors. Though for a time a warrant was the notional measure of reasonableness, over the last century the Court has crafted several exceptions to that measure to give the police greater leeway during on-the-street encounters. The Court has concurrently retreated from robust application of the exclusionary rule to remedy constitutional violations. These shifts have meant far more predictable wins for the prosecution at the suppression hearing stage. And suppression hearing wins matter.