Criminal Defense Attorney Tulsa | Call the Best DUI Drug Attorney | Cale Law Office
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A jury found the defendant guilty of several cocaine-related offenses, including possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Prior to his trial, the district court denied his motion to suppress evidence seized during a traffic stop. He raised two issues on appeal. The first was whether the trial court erred in denial the motion to suppress. The second was whether there was insufficient evidence supporting his conviction for possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Here is a summary of the case.
At trial, a witness testified that he began buying cocaine from the defendant around about 2016. By 2017, the defendant was the witness’s primary source for cocaine. The buyer cooked the cocaine he bought from the defendant into crack and resold it to his own customers.
Law enforcement began wiretapping the witness’s cell phone in early March 2016. They also set up surveillance teams to follow up on leads from the recorded calls. Throughout that month, law enforcement agents intercepted calls between the witness and another man. They later identified this man as the defendant. The witness and the defendant used coded language in their telephone conversations. In his testimony, the witness explained the terms they used as they related to cocaine buys. The witness’s practice was to call the defendant when he wanted to buy cocaine and the defendant would deliver the drugs to the witness’s house.
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Based on the conversations to intercept the cause, law enforcement expected the defendant to deliver cocaine to the house. Officers observed the defendant driving down the street, entering the house, and living 20 minutes later. Officers then saw the defendant leave his own house in a red Ford Taurus tried by his wife. He entered the house caring and are car back. The officer’s of the car is a renter a red light. The drivers able to produce a driver’s license, he impound the car. The officer search the car without a backpack in the truck. As a backpack he found what he believed to be cocaine package and a hard unit.
Defendant first contends that the district court erred in denying his motion to suppress evidence found in the backpack inside the trunk of the car. The ultimate determination of reasonableness under the fourth amendment is a question of law. According to the evidence presented at the suppression hearing, once officers decide to impound the red Taurus, the driver got a car without incident. The officer twice has the passenger, related later identified as the defendant, chased the car. However he remained seated put his hand on his front pants pocket.
When the officer physically pulling on the car, the defendant try to push past the officer break away from his control. Holy on them, the officer explained to the defendant that he was going to pat him down for weapons. A drug detection dog and arrived. While sitting on the next turned the car, alert the presence of narcotics at the passenger side door but in by the truck. The defendant asserted that the canine sniff was unreasonable because it was based on an unlawful search of his pocket. Here is the pocket search was unlawful because it would be on the scope of the patdown asserted to conclude that 85 weapon.
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Truck sensor not search is within the meaning of the fourth amendment. Any interest in possession consommé cannot be deemed legitimate and therefore, governmental contact only reveals the position contravene compromises no legitimate privacy interest. So, canine sniff on the history of the vehicle during a lawful traffic stop does not implicate legitimate privacy interests. But an officer may not prolong the traffic stop, in order to perform the canine sniff, be on the time recently justified by the circumstances of the initial stop. Exception is when he is an objectively reasonable and articulable suspicion of illegal activity.
The defendant is not challenge the validity of the initial traffic stop. It also does not challenge his continued detention waiting arrival the K-9 officer. The officers were not required to base their decision to use a drug detection dog sniff the car on original suspicion of illegal activity. Reasonable suspicion is not required to justify using a drug detection dog sniff during a legitimate traffic stop. The canine alert gave officers probable cause to search the car.
The appellate court also found the evidence presented of the defendants trial, as well as all reasonable inferences from it showed that the jury can include be unoriginal doubt that the substance seized from a was cocaine. They testimony circumstantial evidence relevant to the identity of substance has cocaine. The defendant is not intend that the prosecution was required to present scientific evidence that the substance he possessed was cocaine. As long there is a sufficiently display circumstantial evidence from which a jury can find the substance was identified to be unoriginal doubt, the lack of scientific evidence does not warrant reversal.
If you’ve been charged with a crime, you need the best criminal defense attorney Tulsa has to offer in the area. Call the Cale law office at 918-277-4800. Attorney Stephen Cale has extensive experience with drug crime cases.