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State v. Barnett

Court of Appeals of Oregon

October 2, 2019

STATE OF OREGON, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
NICKLAS MARTIN BARNETT, aka Nicklas Adam Barnett, Defendant-Appellant.

          Argued and submitted January 7, 2019

          Coos County Circuit Court 16CR74403; Richard L. Barron, Senior Judge.

          Matthew Blythe, Deputy Public Defender, argued the cause for appellant.

          Also on the brief was Ernest G. Lannet, Chief Defender, Criminal Appellate Section, Office of Public Defense Services.

          Christopher A. Perdue, Assistant Attorney General, argued the cause for respondent.

          Also on the brief were Ellen F. Rosenblum, Attorney General, and Benjamin Gutman, Solicitor General.

          Before Lagesen, Presiding Judge, and DeVore, Judge, and James, Judge.

         [299 Or.App. 657] PER CURIAM.

         Defendant appeals from his conviction of unlawful possession of methamphetamine, ORS 475.894, assigning error to the trial court's denial of his motion to suppress evidence resulting from the inventory of a small camera case. On appeal, defendant argues that the camera case was not a container "designed" to hold valuables, but was rather designed to hold a camera and that a camera does not constitute a "valuable" when read in the context of the policy, in particular the following section:

"This policy provides guidance regarding searches of individuals in custody. Such searches are necessary to eliminate the introduction of contraband, intoxicants or weapons into the North Bend Police Department facility."

         The state responds that our decision in State v. Cleland, 289 Or. App 379, 382, 410 P.3d 386 (2017), rev den, 362 Or. 699 (2018), supports the trial court's conclusion that the inventory in this case was lawful. The state argues that "an item is a valuable depending on how the governing inventory policy describes the types of valuables that containers might be designed to carry" and points to another section of the policy that states:

"Closed Container Searches. Closed containers will not be opened for inventory purposes except for the following, which shall be opened for inventory: wallets, purses, coin purses, fanny packs, personal organizers, briefcase or other closed containers designed for carrying money or small valuables, or closed containers which are designed for hazardous materials.
"Other closed containers shall be opened and inventoried if the owner acknowledges they contain cash in excess of $10, valuables or a hazardous material."

         The state argues that the policy used "the same kinds of examples of valuables-wallets, purses, briefcases-as the policy at issue in Cleland. And, as in Cleland, those examples suggest a case for carrying a ...


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