A motion to suppress evidence is a request by the defendant in a criminal case to exclude specific evidence from the trial. The motion is usually filed in the pre-trial hearings before the actual trial.
The suppressed evidence will not be used against you when the court grants the motion, and it could impact the outcome of your case. Here is more on what you need to know about evidence suppression in a criminal case.
Common grounds for a motion to suppress
A judge may grant a motion to suppress evidence if the police obtained it by violating your constitutional rights. It could have been an unlawful search and seizure by law enforcement or a confession obtained through coercion and in violation of your Miranda rights.
Similarly, evidence whose integrity is questionable due to mistakes by the police in the chain of custody may also get suppressed.
What it means for your case
A motion to suppress can have a profound effect on your case. It all depends on the importance or weight of the suppressed evidence. For instance, if an involuntary confession is the only evidence linking you to a crime, the prosecution may not have a case without it.
In other cases, the suppression of evidence may not be as significant. If the prosecution has multiple pieces of evidence linking you to the crime, excluding one piece of evidence may not substantially impact your case.
It is also worth noting that a successful motion to suppress does not necessarily mean that you are innocent or that the charges against you will be dropped. The prosecution may still have enough evidence to proceed with the case or they may be able to gather additional evidence to support their case.
Get help with your criminal case
Evidence suppression is among the various defense techniques you can employ if you are facing criminal charges. Therefore, it helps to have an informed assessment of your case to help you craft a suitable defense strategy and increase the chances of getting a desirable verdict.