State v. Delong

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Supreme Court
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Procedure
  • Date Filed: 06-18-2015
  • Case #: S062176
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Kistler, J. for the Court; Brewer, J. concurring; Walters, J. and Baldwin, J. dissenting.
  • Full Text Opinion

A defendant's voluntary consent to a search may be sufficient to demonstrate that an officer's failure to give a Miranda warning did not affect, or only had a tenuous connection, to evidence discovered during the search.

During a traffic stop, a deputy sheriff temporarily placed Defendant into the back of his patrol car in handcuffs. Without advising Defendant of his Miranda rights, the deputy asked "if there was anything [in the car] [he] should be concerned about?" The Defendant responded in the negative and subsequently told the officer that if the officers wanted to search the vehicle, they could. Upon executing a search, they found a fanny pack containing methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. He was then read his Miranda rights and placed under arrest.

Defendant moved to have the evidence suppressed as it arose from a question asked under a Miranda violation. The trial court refused to suppress the evidence, and the Court of Appeals reversed, holding that the discovery of evidence "derived from" the Miranda violation, under Article I, Section 12 of the Oregon Constitution.

The state conceded that the question was in violation of Article 1, Section 12, but that the evidence procured was not derived from the answer. The Court held that a defendant's voluntary consent to a search may be sufficient to demonstrate that an officer's illegal question did not affect, or only had a tenuous connection, to evidence discovered during the search. The Court used a three-factor test: (1) the nature of the violation; (2) the character of Defendant's consent; and (3) the causal connection between the officer's violation and the subsequent invitation of Defendant to search. The Court found that the violation, though present, was not egregious; that the Defendant volunteered the search purely of his volition; and therefore, there was only a tenuous connection. The Court reversed on the foregoing issue and remanded to the Court of Appeals so it could rule on the issue of whether the search of the fanny pack went beyond the consented search. Reversed and remanded.

Brewer, J. concurring;

Walters, J. dissenting, joined by Baldwin, J.

Baldwin J. dissenting, joined by Walters, J.

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