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State v. Wabinga

Court of Appeals of Oregon

August 20, 2014

STATE OF OREGON, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
JULIAN BLEU WABINGA, Defendant-Appellant

Submitted December 19, 2013

Page 1214

Multnomah County Circuit Court. 110632633. Edward J. Jones, Judge.

Peter Gartlan, Chief Defender, and Erik Blumenthal, Deputy Public Defender, Office of Public Defense Services, filed the brief for appellant.

Ellen F. Rosenblum, Attorney General, Anna M. Joyce, Solicitor General, and Pamela J. Walsh, Assistant Attorney General, filed the brief for respondent.

Before Armstrong, Presiding Judge, and Nakamoto, Judge, and Egan, Judge.

OPINION

Page 1215

EGAN, J.

[265 Or.App. 84] Defendant appeals a judgment of conviction for one count of unlawful possession of cocaine, ORS 475.884. He assigns error to the trial court's denial of his motion to suppress evidence, contending that the officers seized him without reasonable suspicion. We affirm.

We review the trial court's denial of a motion to suppress for legal error, and we defer to the trial court's findings of historical fact if they are supported by constitutionally sufficient evidence in the record. State v. Bertha, 256 Or.App. 375, 378, 300 P.3d 265 (2013). In the absence of express findings, any factual disputes are resolved in a manner consistent with the trial court's ultimate conclusion. Id. In light of that standard, the facts are as follows.

On a February afternoon, Oregon State Police Trooper Fromme and Senior Trooper Richardson of the Fish and Wildlife Division were patrolling the Sandy River area of Highway 30 in an Oregon State Police truck demarcated " with a star on the side" and the words " Oregon State Police Trooper" on both doors. The troopers were enforcing fish and wildlife laws, ensuring that anglers had fishing licenses, and performing welfare checks on disabled motorists. Both troopers wore a " field uniform," consisting of cargo pants, a badge hanging from the shirt, and a ball cap marked with " Oregon State Trooper."

Noticing a car pulled off to the side of the road, the troopers parked in a gravel pullout approximately two car-lengths behind a Nissan 280Z. The car appeared to be empty. The troopers did not activate the truck's emergency lights or use the loudspeaker. Richardson immediately ran the car's license

Page 1216

plate on the in-truck computer.[1] After having been parked for a few moments, the troopers saw " a head come up in the driver's seat." Fromme approached the driver's side of the car and saw that the door was slightly ajar. Fromme then inquired of the occupant--defendant--" if he was okay [and] if his car was running." In lieu of a response [265 Or.App. 85] and without prompting from Fromme, defendant got out of his car and shut the door. Fromme ...


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