The Warren Court (1953–69)

Criminal Procedure and Constitutional Rights

Who was the defendant in Mapp v. Ohio and what other events brought her in the public eye?

The case of Mapp v. Ohio began when at least seven Cleveland police officers searched for gambling paraphernalia in the home of Dollree Mapp. Instead, the officers found pornographic books, which they labeled obscene. Mapp was found not guilty of gambling charges but was convicted on the obscenity charges. The case eventually reached the U.S. Supreme Court, which reversed her conviction because the police officers failed to produce a search warrant before rummaging through Mapp’s home.

Mapp was known in boxing circles. She was the ex-wife of former top-ranked light-heavyweight and heavyweight boxer Jimmy Bivins. Then, in 1956, Mapp filed a $750,000 lawsuit against world light-heavyweight champion Archie Moore. She claimed that Moore broke a promise to marry her and physically assaulted her. Mapp moved to Queens, New York. In 1970, police officers seized $250,000 in drugs and stolen property. Mapp was convicted and sentenced to a prison term of twenty years to life. Mapp claimed the charges were a vendetta against her after her famous case. In 1981, Governor Hugh Carey commuted Mapp’s sentence. She had served more than nine years in a women’s prison in New Bedford, New York.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Supreme Court Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App