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Physical Evidence Derived from (Intentional) Miranda Violation

State v. Matthew J. Knapp (I), 2003 WI 121, on certification; vacated and remanded for further consideration in light of United States v. Patane, 542 U. S. ____ (2004), Wisconsin v. Knapp, No. 03-590Knapp I reaffirmed on remand, State v. Matthew J. Knapp (II), 2005 WI 127
For Knapp: Robert G. LeBell

Issue: Whether physical evidence derived from a statement taken in violation of Miranda is suppressible.


¶73. Here, it is undisputed that Roets intentionally violated Knapp’s Miranda rights in order to procure derivative/physical evidence. … If we do not suppress physical evidence in situations of intentional violations of Miranda, we, in essence, undermine the deterrent effect upon which such a decision was based.

¶79. We accept much of the reasoning in Faulkingham and in Patane, and as such, hold that Dickerson requires us to overrule Yang where the violation of Mirandawas intentional. We hold that the policy considerations related to deterrent effect and judicial integrity, which are the underpinnings of the exclusionary rule, support the suppression of physical evidence in situations where there was an intentional Mirandaviolation. We do not have to, and do not, decide whether a negligent Mirandaviolation would result in the same holding.

As indicated above, this holding was vacated by the Supreme Court, but reaffirmed on remand, State v. Matthew J. Knapp (II), 2005 WI 127, emphasis supplied:

¶2 We conclude that the fruit of the poisonous tree doctrine applies under the circumstances of this case under Article I, Section 8 of the Wisconsin Constitution. Where physical evidence is obtained as the direct result of an intentional Miranda violation, we conclude that our constitution requires that the evidence must be suppressed. Therefore, we reverse the circuit court’s order. [3]

[3] Our decision rests on bona fide separate, adequate, and independent state grounds. See Michigan v. Long, 463 U.S. 1032, 1040 (1983).
Further, we reinstate all portions of our decision in State v. Knapp, 2003 WI 121, 265 Wis. 2d 278, 666 N.W. 2d 881, not implicated by the Supreme Court’s order vacating our decision in light of United States v. Patane, 542 U.S. ___, 124 S. Ct. 2620 (2004).

Stress “intentional”: the State conceded that the physical evidence sought suppressed was derived from an intentional violation of Miranda, 20; the principal purpose of the exclusionary rule is, the court says, deterrence of police misconduct, ¶22; and, the court takes pains to say it “will not tolerate the police deliberately ignoring Miranda’s rule as a means of obtaining inculpatory physical evidence,” ¶72. The decision certainly contains some high-flown rhetoric, but its actual reach is, on the face of it, limited to instances where you can show an intentional end-run around Miranda – anything less than that, and the value of deterrence, see ¶74, would probably be outweighed by the value of undeniably reliable evidence. See also ¶75 (“the conduct at issue here is particularly repugnant and requires deterrence”). And, the alternative suppression rationale of preserving judicial integrity, ¶¶79-81, is equally heightened in the context of an intentional violation.

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