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Wolf v. People of the State of Colorado

Significance, Due Process Represents A Living Principle, Only Exclusion Will Deter Violations, Impact


Julius A. Wolf


People of the State of Colorado

Petitioner's Claim

That evidence, obtained illegally, should not have been used against Wolf at his state trial for a state offense because it violated his constitutional rights.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Philip Hornbein

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

James S. Henderson

Justices for the Court

Hugo Lafayette Black, Harold Burton, Felix Frankfurter (writing for the Court), Robert H. Jackson, Stanley Forman Reed, Fred Moore Vinson

Justices Dissenting

William O. Douglas, Frank Murphy, Wiley Blount Rutledge


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

27 June 1949


Affirmed the decision of the Supreme Court of Colorado to let stand Wolf's conviction on the ground that, although the Fourth Amendment applied to the states, the states were not required to exclude evidence obtained unlawfully.

Related Cases

  • Weeks v. United States, 232 U.S. 383 (1914).
  • Palko v. California, 302 U.S. 319 (1937).
  • McNabb v. United States, 318 U.S. 332 (1943).
  • Adamson v. California, 332 U.S. 46 (1947).
  • Mapp v. Ohio, 367 U.S. 643 (1961).

Further Readings

  • Hall, Kermit L., ed. The Oxford Companion to the Supreme Court of the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1992.
  • Levy, Leonard W., ed. Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. Vol. 4. New York: Macmillan, 1986.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1941 to 1953