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New York v. Quarles

United States Supreme Court
467 U.S. 649 (1984)


Facts

A woman approached two officers and told them she had just been raped. She provided the police with a detailed description of her attacker, said that he had just entered a supermarket nearby, and that he was carrying a gun. The police arrived at the supermarket and saw Quarles (defendant) inside. Quarles fit the description of the assailant and when he saw the police, he ran to the back of the store. The police gave chase and kept him in sight for all but a few seconds, until he was caught. One officer frisked him and found an empty gun holster. After handcuffing him, the officer asked Quarles where the gun was and Quarles gestured with his head saying “the gun is over there.” The officer found the gun and read Quarles his Miranda warnings. The officers then asked Quarles about his ownership of the gun and where he got it. Quarles answered these questions. The trial court held that the statement “the gun is over there,” must be excluded because it was elicited before the police read Quarles his Miranda warnings. Furthermore, the court held that his answers to the subsequent questions had to be excluded as evidence tainted by the Miranda violation. The court of appeals affirmed.

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Holding and Reasoning (Rehnquist, J.)

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Dissent (Marshall, J.)

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