A Motion to Suppress can be an extremely effective way for a defendant to control the evidence that can be used against them in a criminal trial. A Motion to Suppress is a motion to the court asking a judge to order that specific evidence cannot be used by the State Attorney’s Office against the defendant in a trial. Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure 3.190(g) and (h) set forth two types of Motions to Suppress; 1) Motion to Suppress Evidence in Unlawful Search, and 2) Motion to Suppress a Confession or Admission Illegally Obtained. Any Motion to Suppress filed needs to, 1) identify the specific evidence or statements sought to be suppressed, 2) the grounds on which the suppression is based, and 3) a general statement of the facts on which the motion is based. Once a Motion to Suppress is filed by a defendant in a criminal case (assuming it is properly prepared and filed) the court will have a hearing on the Motion to Suppress to determine if it should be granted or denied. In that hearing both the defendant and the prosecutor are given the opportunity to present evidence to the court and make legal arguments.
Generally speaking, the less evidence the State Attorney’s Office is able to use at trial the more difficult it is for them to prove their case and get a conviction. For example, it is pretty much impossible for a prosecutor to prove to a jury that a defendant was in possession of cocaine if they don’t have any cocaine to admit into evidence. In some cases, the only direct evidence that a defendant is guilty of a crime is the fact that the defendant admitted to it when questioned by the police. If that admission is suppressed the State Attorney’s Office may not be able to prove their case at all. Motions to Suppress can lead to a case being dropped or the State Attorney’s Office offering a plea deal to a lesser charge.
If you are in need of a Criminal Defense attorney, contact us to set up a consultation with one of our attorneys, (727)954-3720.
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