Added: Laquesha Albert - Date: 17.11.2021 23:06 - Views: 24798 - Clicks: 5430
Claude Mercier appealed after he pled guilty to possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia, reserving the right to appeal the denial of his motion to suppress evidence. Because the district court properly denied the motion to suppress, the Supreme Court affirmed the criminal judgment. State of North Dakota, Plaintiff and Appellee v. Claude Joseph Mercier, Defendant and Appellant. Romanick, Judge. Opinion of the Court by Sandstrom, Justice.
Because the district court properly denied the motion to suppress, we affirm the criminal judgment. The identified caller described the suspect as a white male wearing a black t-shirt, and believed this suspect and a Casual encounters in Steele North Dakota individual were trying to rob him. When Officer McCarthy arrived near the scene, she observed a male who matched the description given, later identified as Mercier, near the location indicated by the caller. She got out of her vehicle and asked Mercier for identification, which he said was in his backpack at a house across the street.
When asked for his name, Mercier identified himself as "Dewayne Liggins" with a birth date of March 29,then as "Dewayne Liggins" with a birth date of March 2,and then again as the same individual but from South Dakota. Each time Officer McCarthy attempted to run this information through dispatch, it came back negative, or not on file. Officer Swenson came to the scene because he recognized the name Dewayne Liggins when he heard it over the radio. When Mercier informed the officers his backpack containing his identification was across the street, the officers asked him whether they could "go get the backpack.
The record is silent as to whether the backpack was retrieved from inside or outside the house where Mercier said it was located. Upon Officer Bratsch's return with the backpack, Mercier confirmed it was his. He declined to allow the officers to search the backpack themselves, but was allowed to go through it slowly himself to obtain his identification.
When asked whether there were any weapons in the backpack, Mercier replied there was a knife. The officers then placed Mercier in handcuffs for safety purposes and searched him. While searching him, Officer Bratsch pulled Mercier's wallet out of his pocket Casual encounters in Steele North Dakota found it contained two identification cards, one belonging to Claude Mercier and one to Dwayne Liggins, as well as some marijuana.
After running the correct name and date of birth through dispatch, the officers discovered Mercier had active warrants for his arrest. He was arrested, placed in the back of a squad car, and read his Miranda rights. The officers searched Mercier's backpack, finding several items that had been reported stolen as well as methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. Mercier was initially arrested and held on possession of stolen property, possession of marijuana, false information to law enforcement, two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, and ingestion of a controlled substance.
After a hearing, the district court denied the motion. Mercier conditionally pled guilty to the charges. The appeal was timely under N. The trial court's disposition of a motion to suppress will not be reversed if, after conflicts in the testimony are resolved in favor of affirmance, there is sufficient competent evidence fairly capable of supporting the trial court's findings, and the decision is not contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence.
That standard of review recognizes the importance of the trial court's opportunity to observe the witnesses and assess their credibility, and we "accord great deference to its decision in suppression matters. Glaesman, N. Ohio, U. Royer, U. See also Glaesman, N. Sarhegyi, N. Indvik, N. State v. Robertsdahl, N. Miller, N. The reasonable-and-articulable-suspicion standard requires that the officer justify the stop "with more than just a vague 'hunch' or other non-objective facts; and.
Backes, N. VandeHoven, N. In Geiger v. They also are not required "to point to a single factor which, standing alone, als a potential violation of the law. Rather, officers are to assess the situation as it unfolds and, based upon inferences and deductions drawn from their experience and training, make the determination whether all of the circumstances viewed together create a reasonable suspicion of potential criminal activity.
He claims he was seized during his initial encounter with Officer McCarthy when she stopped him and asked him for identification. City of Jamestown v. A police officer's "approach. Langseth, N. A casual encounter between an officer and a citizen can become a seizure if "a reasonable person would view the officer's actions--if done by another private citizen--as threatening or offensive.
A seizure occurs only when "the officer, by means of physical force or show of authority, has in some way restrained the liberty of a citizen. North Dakota Dep't of Transp. The issue is whether McCarthy escalated the casual encounter into a seizure by ordering Mercier "to do something, by demanding a response, or by threatening [him] with a show of authority or command," and if so, whether she had reasonable suspicion to order him to stop and identify himself.
This Court has held: "If. A peace officer may stop any person abroad in a public place whom the officer reasonably suspects is committing, has committed, or is about to commit: 1 Any felony. The peace officer may demand of such person the person's name, address, and an explanation of the person's actions.
Under this Court's case law, a simple request made by McCarthy for Mercier to identify himself would not be a seizure for purposes of the Fourth Amendment. A command to do so, however, would be.
See State v. She testified she got out of her vehicle to speak with him and asked him for his identification card or some sort of identification.
Mercier informed McCarthy that his identification was in his backpack at a house across the street. When asked if she specifically told Mercier whether or not he was free to leave, McCarthy stated that "the only thing I told him was that once I identify him and he came up where he didn't have any kind of warrants, he was going to be cut loose as long as he wasn't involved in this investigation. Officer McCarthy was ordering Mercier to do something provide identificationand told Mercier he would be "cut loose" as soon as he did so. This is an order to do something which, consistent with the Fourth Amendment rights of the citizen, "requires the officer to have a reasonable and articulable suspicion that person has been or is violating the law.
While normally his action of simply walking on the street would not suggest criminality, when paired with the information known to Officer McCarthy at the time, his actions could give rise to reasonable suspicion.
The United States Supreme Court has held that in evaluating the validity of an investigatory stop to determine whether there was reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, courts must consider the totality of the circumstances. United States v. Sokolow, U. The Court stated:.
Any one of these factors is not by itself proof of any illegal conduct and is quite consistent with innocent travel. But we think taken together they amount to reasonable suspicion. We said in Reid v. Georgia, U. Indeed, Terry itself involved "a series of acts, each of them perhaps innocent" if viewed separately, "but which taken together warranted further investigation. The facts in this case, when viewed in their totality through the eyes of a trained law enforcement officer, are sufficient to give rise to a reasonable suspicion of unlawful activity.
Mercier matched the description of a suspicious person reported to the police, and he was in the location reported to the police late at night when few other people would be out. Additionally, when he did comply and provide information regarding his identity to the officers, it was clear he was providing false information, because nothing he provided came back as valid.
Therefore, while Mercier was "seized" for purposes of the Fourth Amendment, the seizure was reasonable and valid under the circumstances of this case. The district court did not err in finding the seizure to be valid. The State argues these searches were valid exceptions to the warrant requirement as searches incident to a lawful arrest. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated; and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The North Dakota Constitution similarly prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures. See N. United States, U.Casual encounters in Steele North Dakota
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North Dakota v. Mercier