Then-Justice William Rehnquist declared, “The most comprehensive study on the exclusionary rule is probably that done by Dallin Oaks . . . in 1970.” Rehnquist was referring to Studying the Exclusionary Rule in Search and Seizure, and his praise was too guarded. Nothing else came close to Oaks’s study at the time Rehnquist wrote, and very little comes close as we approach the article’s fortieth anniversary.
Oaks’s article is the second most cited of those published by The University of Chicago Law Review in its seventy-five-year history (after Antonin Scalia’s The Rule of Law as a Law of Rules). Fourteen Supreme Court opinions, scores of lower court opinions, and hundreds of scholarly articles have recited its findings.