The United States Supreme Court in a landmark case created the Exclusionary Rule, which meant that illegally obtained evidence could not be used in a court case against a person. Under Weeks v. United States; if the evidence was obtain against a person in violation under their constitutional rights, that evidence could not be used against them in a court of law. This does not mean that other legally collected evidence could not be used against that individual. The Silverthorn Family was convicted on tax fraud, Illegal evidence had been obtained in their without a search warrant, however, the Silverthorn’s were able to get their evidence back because of the previous Supreme Court ruling in the Week’s case. The District Attorney had photocopied all of the Silverthorn’s records before returning them to them and used them against them at trial. The Silverthorns were convicted. However on Appeal, which went all the way to the Supreme Court, the Silverthorn’s again referred to the Week’s case, this is when the Supreme Court decided the new rule under the “Fruit from the Poisonous Tree”. This rule meant that not only could you not use illegally obtained evidence against a person at trial, but you could not use any evidence formulated from that illegal evidence either. The Silverthorns convictions were overturned.
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