United States District Court, D. Oregon, Eugene Division
OPINION & ORDER
Aiken United States District Judge.
Frank DeFelice moves to suppress evidence obtained by law
enforcement during a search of his fifth-wheel trailer and
any statements made to a detective at the Marion County Jail
on September 13, 2016. The Court held a suppression hearing
on November 14, 2018. For the reasons that follow,
defendant's Motion to Suppress (doc. 41) is DENIED.
2016, the Albany Police Department Street Crimes Unit began
to investigate methamphetamine delivery in the Albany area.
They identified Sasha Davidson as a person who was dealing
methamphetamine in Albany. Both confidential and named
sources, including Davidson, identified defendant as her
supplier. Through further investigation, police obtained the
address of defendant's residence: 6094 Silverton Road NE
April 2016, police stopped Davidson in Albany in a Gold
Cadillac Escalade that was registered to defendant and
arrested her for driving while suspended.
August 2016, police stopped Davidson in another car that she
identified as belonging to defendant. During the stop, police
recovered methamphetamine. Davidson told the police that she
was returning from defendant's house and provided them
with his phone number. Police obtained a court order to
monitor both Davidson's and defendant's phones.
phone monitoring revealed two significant locations in Salem:
defendant's residence at the Silverton Road address and a
space in a campground and trailer park located at 3700
Hager's Grove Road SE. Police observed the following
sequence of phone pings: When Davidson would leave Albany and
travel to the Silverton Road address, defendant would leave
the Hager's Grove Road address and travel to the
Silverton Road address. Then, Davidson would head back south
September 12, 2016, defendant's phone pinged at his house
and then in the area of the campground and then back at his
house. That evening, police observed Davidson leave
defendant's house. They stopped her car and recovered
methamphetamine and a firearm.
after midnight on September 13, 2016, police executed a
search warrant at defendant's house and detained
defendant and two other occupants. At approximately 12:50 AM,
Albany Police Detective Curtis Bell took custody of defendant
and advised him of his Miranda rights. When
Detective Bell asked defendant if he understood his rights
and had any questions, defendant answered that he understood
his rights and had no questions.
Bell then placed defendant in the back of his patrol vehicle
and drove him to a nearby property owned by Marion County
Public Works. There, Detective Bell read the search warrant
to defendant and two others who had been detained at the
house and had been driven to the Marion County Public Works
Property by other officers. Detective Bell advised all three
of their Miranda rights and asked if they understood
or had any questions. They all responded that they understood
their rights and did not have any questions.
Bell then separated the parties, turned on a voice recorder
and told defendant that their conversation was being
recorded. He reminded defendant that he had read the search
warrant and asked whether defendant had any questions.
Defendant responded, "No." He also asked defendant
to confirm that he had been advised of his Miranda
rights, which defendant did, and asked if defendant had any
questions about those rights. Again, defendant said that he
did not have any question. The interrogation continued until
1:00 AM, when defendant refused to answer one of Detective
Bell's questions and stated that he would not answer any
further questions until he spoke with his lawyer. Bell turned
off the recorder and ended the interrogation. Defendant and
Bell then had an unrecorded conversation about defendant
cooperating with Bell and engaging in a controlled buy.
Defendant declined to cooperate in this way.
Detective Bell was advised that the house was safe, he
returned to the house with defendant. Defendant sat in the
living room until the search was completed. Detective Bell
then drove defendant to the Marion County Jail, where
defendant was held on possession and delivery of
methamphetamine based on evidence that had been obtained
during the search as well as evidence that had been seized
from Davidson on September 12, 2016.
the items seized during the search provided some evidence of
drug dealing, the search did not reveal the significant
quantities of narcotics and guns that the detectives had
expected to find. That inconsistency led detectives to
believe that defendant was storing the contraband elsewhere.
So, later in the day on September 13, 2016, Detective Bell
reviewed the phone monitoring data and observed
defendant's pattern of travelling between his house and
the campground on Hager's Grove Road.
detective called the campground and learned from the office
clerk that defendant rented space F-10 there. Detective Bell
visited the campground and obtained copies of defendant's
rental contract, which was completed on August 26, 2016.
Detective Bell also visited space F-10, where he observed a
fifth-wheel trailer and defendant's gold Cadillac
Escalade, which Davidson had been driving back in April.
visiting the campground, Detective Bell returned to the
Marion County Jail around 4:00 pm. He arranged for jail
deputies to move defendant to a table and chairs placed at
the top of a stairwell outside of a room for inmates to speak
with visitors. According to defendant, when the deputies went
to his cell to move him, defendant told them that he did not
want to speak to Detective Bell, and that he wanted to speak
to his attorney. The deputies responded that defendant could
take that up with Detective Bell.
defendant arrived at the table, Detective Bell reintroduced
himself, reminded defendant that he had previously been read
his Miranda rights, and acknowledged that defendant
had invoked his right to counsel. Accordingly, Detective Bell
stated that he would not ask questions about the
investigation. Defendant acknowledged that he had been read
his Miranda rights. Detective Bell then sought to
obtain defendant's consent to search the campground site.
During the conversation, several jail deputies walked through
the area, but there were no other witnesses. Defendant was
not handcuffed and ate his dinner during the interview.
Ultimately, defendant signed a consent to search form and
released the key to his trailer to Detective Bell. The entire
interaction lasted about seventy-five minutes. Detective Bell
did not bring a voice recorder to the jail and did not record
the conversation, Detective Bell told defendant about the
discovery of the trailer and vehicle at the campground, that
he had probable cause to believe that defendant was operating
a stash house in the trailer, based on the phone monitoring
data, the lease agreement and other evidence that Bell had
obtained during his investigation at the campground, the
Cadillac's association with Davidson, and information
from a confidential informant that ...