News

Search and Seizure Quarterly - Winter 2018

4/29/2019 11:02:00 AM

Illinois Prosecutor Services, LLC

Don Hays

PO Box 722

Carlinville, Illinois 62626

Office Phone: (217) 854-8041    Fax: (217) 854-5343

Webpage: www.ipsllconline.com

Email: don.ipsllc@gmail.com 

 

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SEARCH AND SEIZURE QUARTERLY

WINTER ISSUE – 2019 

(Oct-Dec 2018 Cases)

IN THIS ISSUE

 

1.      People v. Jasper Lawrence, 2018 IL APP (1st) 161267, (1st Dist., December 27, 2018) Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Felon - - AffirmedISSUE: SEARCH AND SEIZURE (Probable Cause): Did the police have sufficient probable cause to justify the arrest of this defendant? (Yes).

2.      People v. Ricky L. Pratt, 2018 IL App (5th) 170427, (5th Dist., December 19, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - Affirmed.   ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Blood Draw):  Did the warrantless blood draw from this defendant violate his Fourth Amendment rights? (Yes).

3.      People v. Amy Lynn Mueller, 2018 IL App (2nd) 170863, (2nd Dist., December 13, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - AffirmedISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Reasonable Suspicion):  Did the police have sufficient reasonable suspicion to justify the stop of this defendant for ILU?  (No).

4.      People v. Jonathan Lindsey, 2018 IL App (3rd) 150877, (3rd Dist., October 30, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - AffirmedISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Curtilage):  Did the defendant have an expectation of privacy on the outside of his hotel door?  (Yes).

5.      People v. David Williams, 2018 IL App (2nd) 160683, (2nd Dist., October 23, 2018) DUI; Possession of Drug Paraphernalia; Disobeying a Traffic Control Devise - - AffirmedISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Probable Cause to Arrest):  Did the police have sufficient probable cause to justify the arrest of this defendant for DUI?  (Yes).

6.      People v. Derrick Bonilla, 2018 IL 122484, (Ill. Sup. Ct., October 18, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - AffirmedISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Curtilage):  Did the defendant have an expectation of privacy on the outside of his apartment door?  (Yes).

7.      People v. Jose Lopez, 2018 IL App (1st) 153331, (1st Dist., October 5, 2018) Denial of Motion to Suppress Evidence - - Reversed and Remanded.   ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Reasonable Suspicion):  Did the arresting officer have sufficient reasonable suspicion to justify a stop of this defendant after the Officer received a tip concerning wrongdoing? (No).

 

CASE ANALYSIS

 

1.      People v. Jasper Lawrence, 2018 IL APP (1st) 161267, (1st Dist., December 27, 2018) Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Felon - - Affirmed

ISSUE: SEARCH AND SEIZURE (Probable Cause): Did the police have sufficient probable cause to justify the arrest of this defendant? (Yes).

FACTS:   Lawrence was convicted of unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon and sentenced to seven years in the IDOC.  On appeal, he claimed first that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress the gun seized from him because police officers arrested him without probable cause. Second, he claimed that the trial court coerced a guilty verdict by telling the jurors to continue to deliberate after the jurors sent out a note indicating that they were deadlocked. Third, he asked the appellate court to vacate his sentence and remand for resentencing because the trial court either relied on an incorrect sentencing range or impermissibly enhanced his sentence by using an element of the offense also as an aggravating factor.

FINDING #1:   The Officers had probable cause to believe that a traffic violation had been committed, as required to stop the defendant's vehicle. WHY: They observed the defendant's vehicle fail to stop at a red light before making a right turnFINDING #2:   The officers had probable cause to believe the defendant did not legally possess a gun, as required to arrest the defendant after the officers stopped his vehicle. WHY: The defendant made a false statement that the gun was not a gun, but a lighterFINDING #2:   The defendant’s arrest for unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon occurred when the defendant was handcuffed, not when the police officer drew his weapon. WHY: The officer was permitted to draw his weapon when he observed the defendant's gun.

        2.      People v. Ricky L. Pratt, 2018 IL App (5th) 170427, (5th Dist., December 19, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - Affirmed.  

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Blood Draw):  Did the warrantless blood draw from this defendant violate his Fourth Amendment rights? (Yes).

FACTSPratt was involved in an automobile accident. A detective investigating the accident directed medical personnel to draw Pratt's blood for chemical testing while he was unconscious. Pratt was subsequently charged with aggravated driving under the influence (aggravated DUI) (625 ILCS 5/11-501(d)(1)(F)). He filed a motion to suppress the test results, arguing that it constituted an unreasonable warrantless search in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The trial court agreed and granted the motion. The People appealed, arguing that (1) the court should have granted its motion for a directed finding because the defendant did not present evidence that the blood draw occurred at all and (2) the blood draw was a valid consensual search under the implied consent provisions in the Illinois Vehicle Code.

FINDING #1:   The People's act of drawing blood from the defendant while he was unconscious in a hospital did not constitute a valid consensual search under the implied consent provisions in the Illinois Vehicle Code. WHY: The defendant was not under arrest when the tests were ordered, and the People failed to demonstrate that the facts known to either the police chief, who ordered the detective to go to the hospital and obtain a blood sample from the defendant, or the detective, who ordered the nurse to perform the blood draw, were sufficient to give them probable cause to believe the defendant had driven under the influence at the time they ordered the blood drawFINDING #2:   The exigent circumstances exception to the search warrant requirement did not apply to validate the warrantless blood draw, which occurred while the defendant was unconscious in the hospital. WHY: There was no evidence presented to show that it would have been impossible for any police officers involved in the investigation of the defendant's fatal automobile accident to obtain a warrant before requesting the blood draw.

3.      People v. Amy Lynn Mueller, 2018 IL App (2nd) 170863, (2nd Dist., December 13, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - Affirmed

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Reasonable Suspicion):  Did the police have sufficient reasonable suspicion to justify the stop of this defendant for ILU?  (No).

FACTSMueller was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol (625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(1), (a)(2)) and improper lane usage (ILU) (id. § 11-709(a)). She moved to quash her arrest and suppress evidence, contesting the initial stop of her vehicle for ILU. The trial court granted the motion and denied the People's motion to reconsider. The People appealed.

FINDING:  The statute for improper lane usage (ILU) was not ambiguous and only applied when a vehicle crossed the line dividing the traffic lanes, rather than when a vehicle stayed within its own lane, and thus, the police officer did not have reasonable suspicion that the defendant violated the ILU statute after the officer observed the defendant touch the dividing line. WHY: In common practice, a traffic “lane” was one in which vehicles legally and customarily are driven toward their destinations, and if a line's purpose is to divide two lanes, then a vehicle has not changed lanes until it has crossed the line.

4.      People v. Jonathan Lindsey, 2018 IL App (3rd) 150877, (3rd Dist., October 30, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - Affirmed

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Curtilage):  Did the defendant have an expectation of privacy on the outside of his hotel door?  (Yes).

FACTSThe police used a trained drug-detection dog to conduct a free air sniff of the door handle and seams of Lindsey's motel room. The dog alerted to the presence of drugs inside the room, and the police obtained a search warrant. During their search, they found 4.7 grams of heroin, and Lindsey was charged with unlawful possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance while being within 1000 feet of a school. Lindsey filed a motion to suppress evidence, arguing that the dog sniff violated his fourth amendment rights. The trial court denied the motion. Ultimately, the court found Lindsey guilty and entered a judgment of conviction and a separate second judgment ordering Lindsey to pay a $3000 drug assessment fee, a $500 drug street value fine, and a $250 DNA analysis fee and to submit a DNA sample. Lindsey appealed, arguing that (1) the trial court erred when it denied his motion to suppress evidence and (2) this court should vacate his fees and fine.

FINDING #1:   The defendant had a reasonable expectation of privacy in the corridor of the motel room where he had been staying, prior to his arrest, and thus the use by a sheriff's deputy of a drug-detection dog to conduct a free-air sniff of the door handle and seams of the motel room, following the defendant's arrest on suspicion of driving without a license, constituted a warrantless search in violation of the defendant's Fourth Amendment rights. WHY: The deputy used the dog to explore details previously unknown in the defendant's motel roomFINDING #2:   The sheriff's deputy did not act in good faith when he used the drug-detection dog to conduct a warrantless search in the corridor of the motel room, and thus the evidence obtained in the subsequent search of the motel room, after the issuance of a warrant, should have been suppressed. WHY: Prior case law clearly established at the time of the search that the use of a dog to sniff a motel room door without a warrant was illegal under the Fourth Amendment, and the search was not isolated negligence, but a deliberately executed attempt to find drugs inside the motel room.

5.      People v. David Williams, 2018 IL App (2nd) 160683, (2nd Dist., October 23, 2018) DUI; Possession of Drug Paraphernalia; Disobeying a Traffic Control Devise - - Affirmed

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Probable Cause to Arrest):  Did the police have sufficient probable cause to justify the arrest of this defendant for DUI?  (Yes).

FACTSFollowing a jury trial in the circuit court of Kane County, defendant, David R. Williams, was found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) (625 ILCS 5/11-501(a)(2)), possession of drug paraphernalia (720 ILCS 600/3.5(a)) and disobeying a traffic control device (625 ILCS 5/11-305(a)). Defendant argues on appeal that the trial court erred in denying his pretrial motion to quash his arrest and suppress evidence discovered during a search incident to his arrest. Defendant further argues that the State failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he was guilty of DUI.

FINDING: These police officers had probable cause to arrest the defendant for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), even though the defendant contended that his poor driving was fully explained by the condition of his vehicle. WHY: The officers observed the defendant improperly proceeded straight through an intersection when the green left-turn arrow came on, smelled the odor of alcohol on the defendant's person, observed the defendant's slurred speech and his bloodshot eyes; the officers had no reason to believe that the defendant's vehicle was not in good working order, and the officers observed the defendant swaying.

6.      People v. Derrick Bonilla, 2018 IL 122484, (Ill. Sup. Ct., October 18, 2018) Suppression of Evidence - - Affirmed

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Curtilage):  Did the defendant have an expectation of privacy on the outside of his apartment door?  (Yes).

FACTSThe Supreme Court noted that this appeal presented a search and seizure issue involving application of its recent opinion in People v. Burns, 2016 IL 118973, 401 Ill. Dec. 468, 50 N.E.3d 610. Burns, relying on Florida v. Jardines, 569 U.S. 1, 133 S. Ct. 1409, 185 L.Ed.2d 495 (2013), held that the warrantless use of a drug-detection dog at a defendant's apartment door, located within a locked apartment building, violated a defendant's rights under the fourth amendment to the United States Constitution. In this case, the trial court determined that the police violated the defendant's fourth amendment rights by conducting a dog sniff of the threshold of defendant's apartment, located on the third floor of an unlocked apartment building. The appellate court affirmed. 2017 IL App (3d) 160457, 415 Ill. Dec. 183, 82 N.E.3d 128.

FINDING #1:   The common area hallway immediately outside the door of a drug suspect's apartment, located on the third floor of an unlocked building containing four apartments on each floor, fell within the “curtilage” of the suspect's home, and thus the warrantless use of a drug-detection dog at the threshold of the door violated the suspect's Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches. WHY: Such area constituted an area adjacent to the home and to which the activity of the home life extendedFINDING #2:   Cannabis discovered during the execution of the search warrant, which warrant was obtained as result of an illegal warrantless sniff by a drug-detection dog at the threshold of the door to the defendant's apartment did not come within the good faith exception to the exclusionary rule, in drug prosecution. WHY: No United States Supreme Court or Illinois precedent specifically authorized such search, and Illinois precedent at the time of the warrantless sniff held that a common area landing outside of an apartment door was protected by the Fourth Amendment.

7.      People v. Jose Lopez, 2018 IL App (1st) 153331, (1st Dist., October 5, 2018) Denial of Motion to Suppress Evidence - - Reversed and Remanded.  

ISSUESEARCH AND SEIZURE (Reasonable Suspicion):  Did the arresting officer have sufficient reasonable suspicion to justify a stop of this defendant after the Officer received a tip concerning wrongdoing? (No).

FACTSLopez was charged with driving while his license was suspended (DWLS) in violation of section 6-303(a) of the Illinois Vehicle Code (625 ILCS 5/6-303(a)). He filed a motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence, alleging that the traffic stop that led to his arrest was illegal. After an evidentiary hearing, the circuit court denied defendant's motion. Following a stipulated bench trial, defendant was convicted of DWLS and sentenced to 24 months of probation and 30 days' imprisonment. On appeal, Lopez contended that the court erred in denying his motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence. Specifically, he argued that the anonymous tip relied upon by the arresting officer was unreliable and inadequate to establish reasonable suspicion of drunk driving.

FINDING #1:   An anonymous tip relied upon by the officer, who did not observe any traffic violations or suspicious activity, did not establish reasonable suspicion to conduct traffic stop. WHY: While the tip included details such as car model, color, location, direction, and partial license plate number, tip was about “a DUI driver,” with no specific allegations as to what the tipster witnessed or had particular knowledge of to conclude that the driver was intoxicated, and, while details of the tip corroborated by the officer included the general location, direction, make, and color of the vehicle, such details were adequate to establish that the officer identified the person whom the tipster meant to accuse but did not show that the tipster had knowledge of concealed criminal activity. 725 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/107-14, 5/108-1.01.  FINDING #2:   The exclusionary rule applied to evidence obtained during the traffic stop for which the officer lacked reasonable suspicion. WHY: The application of the rule served as a deterrent to future investigatory stops made without reasonable suspicion, and the officer neither had probable cause nor a good faith on error when he made the stopFINDING #3:   The officer's post-traffic-stop observation of the defendant driving vehicle had to be suppressed as the fruit of the poisonous tree in this prosecution for driving while license suspended. WHY: The officer did not have reasonable suspicion to conduct the stop and, thus, the stop was illegal; the observation was not made until after the officer pulled over the vehicle and, thus, it was in no way attenuated from the illegal stop, and the officer did not observe the defendant driving or in control of the vehicle until immediately after he performed the illegal traffic stop. 625 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/6-303(a).

For a complete analysis of recent Search and Seizure Law Quarterly see our CRIMINAL JUSTICE CASE DIGEST at:  www.illinoisprosecutorservices.com

 

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llinois Prosecutor Services, LLC

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