LOCATION: Detroit Public Schools
DOCKET NO.: 73-482
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1972-1975)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
CITATION: 417 US 433 (1974)
ARGUED: Mar 20, 1974
DECIDED: Jun 10, 1974
Edward R. Korman - for the United States, an amicus curiae, by special leave of Court
Kenneth M. Mogill - for respondent, pro hac vice, by special leave of Court
L. Brooks Patterson - for petitioner
Roman S. Gribbs - for the Detroit Bar Association, as amicus curiae, by special leave of Court
Facts of the case
Media for Michigan v. TuckerAudio Transcription for Oral Argument - March 20, 1974 in Michigan v. Tucker
Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - June 10, 1974 in Michigan v. Tucker
Warren E. Burger:
The judgment and opinion of the Court in number 73-482 Michigan against Tucker will be announced by Mr. Justice Rehnquist.
William H. Rehnquist:
This case is here on a writ of certiorari to the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
The respondent who was a defendant arrested and indicted for rape was interrogated prior to this Court's decision Miranda versus Arizona by police officers who advised him of his right to remain silent and his right to counsel, but did not advise him of his right to appointed counsel.
Respondent told the police that he understood his right and that he did not desire a lawyer.
In response to questioning he then offered the name of one Henderson as an alibi witness.
The police contacted Henderson who did not provide respondent with an alibi, but indeed quite the contrary gave the police incriminating information about him.
Respondent saw just depressed both his own statements and Henderson's testimony at his trial which occurred after the Miranda decision.
The trial court excluded respondent's statements, but the motion to exclude Henderson's testimony was denied and Henderson was allowed to testify.
Respondent was convicted and his conviction was affirmed throughout the Michigan appellate courts.
He then sought habeas corpus relief in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan which granted the writ, holding the Henderson's testimony was inadmissible because his identity had been learned only through respondent's statement given without the full scope of the warning set forth in Miranda and the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed.
We reverse the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
The police in this case did not deny respondent any right guaranteed by the constitution, but rather failed only to give him the full Miranda warnings.
Under these circumstances and because the interrogation occurred prior to this Court's decision in Miranda, we do not believe that the deterrent purpose of the exclusionary rule would be served by excluding Henderson's testimony as well as respondent's own statements.
There is no concern in this case with the evidence derived from respondent's -- no concern that such evidence is in anyway untrustworthy as a result of respondent's failure to receive full warnings.
To the extent of the exclusionary rule maybe justified on the basis of requiring the government to bear a full burden of investigation, we do not believe that the limited recourse to respondent's statement which is involved in this case violates any provision of the constitution.
The judgment of the Court of Appeals is therefore reversed.
Mr. Justice Stewart while joining the opinion of the Court has filed a concurring opinion.
Mr. Justice Brennan has filed an opinion concurring in the judgment in which Mr. Justice Marshall has joined.
Mr. Justice White has filed an opinion concurring in a judgment.
Mr. Justice Douglas has filed a dissenting opinion.
Warren E. Burger:
Thank you, Mr. Justice Rehnquist.