Supremes Rule Some Inadmissible Evidence May Be Admitted
SCOTUSblog's Tom Goldstein, who was involved in the case, says that though the specific legal question -- "whether the Court's prior ruling that errors by judicial clerks do not trigger the exclusionary rule should be applied to police clerks" -- was narrow, the ruling's effect will be broad. "It applies fully to negligence by police officers in their day-to-day determination whether there is probable cause to conduct a search," says Goldstein. "If the officer makes an objectively reasonable mistake -- i.e., he is merely negligent -- the exclusionary rule does not apply to whatever evidence he finds."
The Court split 5-4 along the usual lines, with Alito, Kennedy, Scalia and Thomas joining the Chief Justice.