What Is A Motion To Suppress Evidence In A Criminal Case?

A motion to suppress evidence in a criminal case is a way to make a request of the court to exclude certain evidence from being shown in court. In other words, it is a way of saying, “Judge, we do not want the jury to see this particular piece of evidence and here is why…”

When Is A Motion To Suppress Evidence Generally Filed In A Criminal Case?

A motion to suppress is generally filed before the actual trial. Criminal cases are resolved in a couple of different ways; either through negotiations, typical plea bargains (which are deals made with prosecutors to dismiss certain charges in exchange for pleading), or by trial. The trial can be a bench trial or a jury trial. In a bench trial, a judge makes an evidence-based decision of guilt or innocence, and in a jury trial, a panel of four to 12 people (depending on the type of case) make a decision of guilt or innocence.

A motion to suppress evidence would be filed in a criminal case right after all the discovery and exchange of information has taken place, and after we have had a chance to review the police report, the videos and the officer’s conduct and actions. We would say something along the lines of, “There was a problem here with this evidence, so it should not be used at trial.”

What Are Common Grounds For Filing A Motion To Suppress Evidence?

The most common grounds for filing a motion to suppress is a violation of someone’s constitutional right against unreasonable searches and seizures, which is stated in the Fourth Amendment. Motions to suppress are typically based on a violation of constitutional rights or other violations of the law-based procedures that officers must follow. For example, if a technician from the state lab did not follow the proper procedure when handling a blood sample from a DUI case, then we could file a motion to suppress the results of that blood test. We would be able to argue that the results lack reliability because the technician failed to follow the scientific procedure and use the proper methods.

Is There Any Type Of Evidence That Absolutely Cannot Be Suppressed In A Criminal Case?

There is not a single type of evidence that cannot be suppressed in a criminal case, but some types of evidence are harder to suppress than others. In most cases, the defense is trying to suppress blood test results, drug test results or a confession.

For more information on Motion To Suppress Evidence In Utah, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (801) 309-6966 today.

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