CORE CRIMINAL LAW SUBJECTS: Evidence: Suppression:

2019 (October Term)

United States v. Blackburn, 80 M.J. 205 (suppression arguments not raised at trial are waived under MRE 311(d)(2)(A), and preservation requires a particularized objection; this requirement ensures the government has the opportunity to present relevant evidence and develop a full record for review on appeal).

(an appellate court reviews a military judge’s denial of a motion to suppress evidence for abuse of discretion; an abuse of discretion occurs when a military judge’s findings of fact are clearly erroneous or his conclusions of law are incorrect). 

(in reviewing a ruling on a motion to suppress, an appellate court considers the evidence in the light most favorable to the party that prevailed on the motion).

(the Fourth Amendment safeguards the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects; this protects against unreasonable searches and seizures and requires warrants to be supported by probable cause; absent probable cause, a court typically applies the exclusionary rule).

2012 (September Term)

United States v. Coleman, 72 M.J. 184 (the suppression by the prosecution of evidence favorable to an accused upon request violates due process where the evidence is material either to guilt or to punishment, irrespective of the good faith or bad faith of the prosecution).

(the failure of the trial counsel to disclose evidence that is favorable to the defense on the issue of guilt or sentencing violates an accused’s constitutional right to due process; an appellate court reviews all such cases for harmless error - whether there is a reasonable probability that, had the evidence been disclosed, the result of the proceeding would have been different). 


United States v. Jameson, 65 M.J. 160 (MRE 311(d)(2)(A) requires that motions to suppress evidence be made by the defense prior to submission of a plea; the general rule is that a failure to make the motion prior to the plea constitutes a waiver of the motion or objection; the only exception is if good cause is shown by the moving party; no good cause exists when the moving party knew or could have known about the evidence in question before the deadline).


United States v. Madigan, 63 M.J. 118 (deviating from a regulation or instruction which sets out procedures for collecting, transmitting, or testing urine samples does not render a sample inadmissible as a matter of law; however, such deviation may be considered along with all other factors in determining if the evidence lacks sufficient reliability to be considered by the finders of fact; the military judge may exclude drug-test results if he finds there has been a substantial violation of regulations intended to assure reliability of the testing procedures).


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