Police officers are required to follow the Constitution. Many amendments that make up the Bill of Rights deal with law enforcement related issues and explain the rules that the police must follow. Interpretation of the Constitution occurs when cases are challenged in court. The 4th Amendment requires that people in the United States are free from unreasonable searches and seizures. When the trial court establishes that a defendant’s constitutional rights were violated, the judge can rule to exclude the illegally obtained evidence. This is applying the exclusionary rule. Throughout the years the courts have also established exceptions to the exclusionary rule which means illegally obtained evidence may still be accepted as evidence in a criminal trial.
Deliverable Length: 2-3 paragraphs
The U.S. system of government and criminal justice system place certain authority and responsibility upon the law enforcement officer, the prosecutor, and the judge. Each individual has various degrees of discretion that can be exercised in performing duties at different times during each stage of a criminal procedure. The exercise of discretion can have a tremendous impact on the manner in which a criminal case is investigated, prosecuted, or sentenced.
Part 1: Provide concrete examples of when and how each of these officials of the criminal justice system (law enforcement officer, the prosecutor, and the judge) may appropriately exercise discretion at the six stages of criminal procedure:
Remember that one or more of these officials will have little or no involvement in all six stages of criminal procedure; however, for each stage, indicate which official has the power to exercise discretion and how that discretion can be legitimately exercised by that official.
Part 2: Then, suggest guidelines that are now, or that could legitimately be, imposed by law to limit the arbitrary use of each official’s power of discretion. Provide support or examples for each of the guidelines that you have suggested.
Please provide APA citation and references