Appeal from the District Court of Grand Forks County, Northeast Central Judicial District, the Honorable Lawrence E. Jahnke, Judge.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: VandeWalle, Chief Justice.
N.D. Supreme CourtState v. Pederson,
This opinion is subject to petition for rehearing. [Go to Documents]
[Download as WordPerfect] Concurrence filed.
Opinion of the Court by VandeWalle, Chief Justice.
[¶1] Kyle Pederson appealed from a district court order denying his motion to suppress evidence, which we treat as an Appeal from the subsequently entered criminal judgment. Pederson argues the district court erred in denying his motion because any evidence obtained after law officers unlawfully entered his motel room and arrested him must be suppressed under the fruit-of-the-poisonous-tree doctrine and any statements he made during the interrogation must be suppressed because he invoked his right to counsel. We affirm.
[¶2] Pederson became a suspect in multiple armed robberies in the Grand Forks area. On December 22, 2009, the district court issued a search warrant for Pederson's residence. Law officers began conducting surveillance on Pederson's house and followed Pederson when he left his home with a confidential informant. Pederson and the confidential informant went to a motel and reserved a room. Later that night the confidential informant left the motel room and met with law officers. The confidential informant told the officers that Pederson had been using a BB gun to commit the robberies but he was attempting to purchase a shotgun. The informant also said Pederson was becoming a little less stable and possibly more violent.
[¶3] The law officers decided to arrest Pederson based on the information the confidential informant provided. Four officers went to the motel room, carrying firearms and dressed in SWAT t-shirts and body armor. When the officers arrived at the motel room the door was approximately four inches ajar. One of the officers knocked on the door and the door opened approximately three-fourths of the way. The officers announced themselves and yelled "come out, show me your hands." Pederson started to come out of the bathroom, but ducked back in, and then came out with his hands up. All four officers had their weapons drawn and pointed at Pederson. One of the officers asked Pederson if they could enter and Pederson consented. After the officers entered the room, they ordered Pederson to lay on the floor and handcuffed him.
[¶4] Pederson was placed under arrest and taken to the police station for questioning. Pederson was informed he was under arrest and he was advised of his rights under Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966). Pederson agreed to talk to the officers and signed a waiver of his rights before the interview began. On December 23, 2009, at approximately 12:30 a.m., three different officers began interviewing Pederson about the robberies. The interview was recorded. The officers questioned Pederson about the robberies and told him they thought he was involved. The officers questioned Pederson about what he told the confidential informant, and Pederson said:
A. Putting what togeth . . . I mean, that's . . I didn't say nothin' to the guy. What did I say, what . . . I don't know what to say, I mean . . . you're gonna sit there and beat this up, I mean, I'm getting a lawyer then or something, I mean this, it ain't got nothin' to do with me. I'm fuckin' telling you guys, it's got nothin' to do with me, I ain't no fuckin', go through my record, look at me, I'm not a violent person, okay. I don't do that, I don't steal, I ain't, you know, I've been living an honest, fuckin' life. I don't do nothin' but work. I've been, I've had a job steady since I was like 14 years old, you know. And I got into the dope and I've lost it all and here I am. Q. Can I give you my theory on this? A. Sure. Q. Do you want to keep talking with us here? A. Yeah, I mean . . sure. I got nothin' to hide, I'm not lying about it. Pederson continued to talk to the officers and he eventually confessed he was involved in the robberies.
[¶5] On December 23, 2009, Pederson was charged with one count of robbery. On January 6, 2010, Pederson was charged with five more counts of robbery, one count of possession of controlled substance, one count of possession of drug paraphernalia for use with oxycodone, ...