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Cedric
Cedric, Criminal Defense Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 2899
Experience:  Several Years of Criminal Defense Trials in L.A. and O.C. as public defender and private attorney
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Deft had assaulted Bart because Bart failed to pay Deft for

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Deft had assaulted Bart because Bart failed to pay Deft for cocaine Deft sold to Bart.Police obtained a valid warrant for the arrest of Deft on an assault charge.They went to Defts apartment and arrested Deft at the front door when he answered their knock.The officers then walked through the apartment and,in a rear bedroom,saw drug paraphernalia which they left in place.After being read his Miranda rights,Deft immediately stated:"I do not want to talk to you."Deft was booked and placed in a cell with Bob,an inmate who was known by jailers to be an informant.Bob engaged in conversation and Deft made statements incriminating himself concerning drug trafficking.Bob promptly related Deft's statement to jail personnel.Police then obtained a warrant authorizing a search of Deft's apartment for cocaine and drug paraphernalia.The affidavit in support of the warrant recited that Deft had sold cocaine to Bart and that police officers had seen drug paraphernalia in Defts apartment. The affidavit did not diclose Deft's statements to Bob or the circumstances in which police observed the drug paraphernalia. Officers who executed the search warrant seized the drug paraphernalia and cocaine which they also found in the apartment. Deft was charged with possession of cocaine and drug paraphernalia under applicable state laws. Deft has moved to exclude from evidence his statements to Bob because he claims they were involuntary, were elicited after he invoked his Miranda rights, and were obtained in the abscence of counsel. He argues that admission of the evidence would violate his rights under th Fifth and Sixth Amendments. What arguments should the prosecutor make in opposition to the motion, and how should the court rule on the motion? Deft has also moved to exclude any testimony regarding the police officers' initial observations of drug paraphernalia in Deft's home and to exclude the items seized in the search made pursuant to the search warrant. What arguments based on the Fourth Amendment should Deft make in support of this motion, What arguments should the prosecutor make in opposition to the motion, and how should the court rule on the motion? Discuss.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Cedric replied 7 years ago.
It's really hard for me to see this from the prosecutor's side, but I'll try.

First--Deft

1) His 4th Amendment rights were initially violated since the police only had a warrant to arrest him on assault charges. Once they did that at the door, the search of the rest of the apartment was illegal, since it could not be justified as necessary for officer safety or any other reason.

2) His 4th and 6th Amendment rights were violated when the police executed the 2nd search warrent, since they relied upon the prior illegally obtained evidence and a hearsay statement from a jailhouse snitch.

Prosecutor:

1) Could argue that they were doing a sweep. But it's a loser.

2) Could argue that as warrants aren't held to the same standard as criminal convictions, the police's warrant was validly obtained, even though it was based on information that would otherwise be suppressed before trial.

Court:

Should rule in favor of Deft on both counts for above stated reasons, and because 2nd search was also fruits of the posionous tree, since it stemmed from knowledge that was only gained in an illegal search.
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