State v. Esquivel

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
  • Date Filed: 11-15-2017
  • Case #: A158431
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Ortega, P.J. for the Court; Lagesen, J.; & Garrett, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

In order to satisfy constitutional requirements, an officer "must provide Miranda warnings to a suspect before interrogating her if she is either in full custody or under compelling circumstances." State v. Magee, 304 Or 261, 265 (1987).

Defendant appealed from a conviction for two counts of third-degree theft. Defendant assigned error to the trial court’s denial of her motion to suppress a statement admitting guilt, which was obtained during a police interrogation at Defendant's residence. On appeal, Defendant argued that the statement should have been suppressed because it was made under compelling circumstances without Miranda warnings, and was therefore obtained in violation of her Article 1, section 12 right against self-incrimination. In response, State argued that since Defendant made the statement upon being informed that she was under arrest, "and not in response to a question," the admission of guilt was not obtained during an interrogation. In order to satisfy constitutional requirements, an officer "must provide Miranda warnings to a suspect before interrogating her if she is either in full custody or under compelling circumstances." State v. Magee, 304 Or 261, 265 (1987). Circumstances are “compelling” if a totality of the circumstances shows that officers created "the sort of police-dominated atmosphere that Miranda warnings were intended to counteract," such that a reasonable individual "would have felt compelled to answer [the officers’] questions."  State v. Roble-Baker, 340 Or 631, 641 (2006); State v. Bush, 203 Or App 605, 610 (2006). The Court of Appeals concluded that "giving Defendant the option of cooperating and receiving a citation or being arrested, [the officer] created a coercive environment" would have caused "a reasonable person in defendant’s position [to feel] compelled to cooperate with the officer to avoid going to jail."  Since the officer did not Mirandize Defendant, the Court found the statement was obtained in violation of her Article I, section 12 constitutional rights, and held that the trial court erred in failing to suppress. Reversed and remanded.

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