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United States v. Lucero

United States District Court, D. Utah

January 6, 2017

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
MIGUEL LUCERO, Defendant.

          FINDINGS OF FACT AND MEMORANDUM DECISION DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO SUPRESS

          JILL N. PARRISH, DISTRICT COURT JUDGE

         The defendant, Miguel Lucero, was indicted on firearm and drug charges. He moved to suppress a handgun and a large bag of methamphetamine that police officers discovered in a black bag that Mr. Lucero threw after seeing a police vehicle parked in front of his home. [Docket 19] The court held an evidentiary hearing for the motion to suppress on September 30, 2016. The parties were then given an opportunity to brief the motion and the court heard oral argument on December 12, 2016. Based upon the evidence presented to the court and the parties' written and oral arguments, the court DENIES Mr. Lucero's motion to suppress. The court, therefore, sets Mr. Lucero's jury trial for February 15, 2017 at 8:30 am.

         FINDINGS OF FACT

         1. On January 2, 2016, Officer Jared Nielsen responded to a stolen vehicle report. Tr. 7:7-25.

         2. Officer Nielsen broadcast an attempt to locate for the vehicle. Tr. 8:3-7.

         3. Upon receiving the attempt to locate, Officer Chris Poteracki proceeded directly to the 800 block of 23rd Street in Ogden. He had previously seen other stolen vehicles within the area, and it was in close proximity to where the vehicle had been stolen. Tr. 31-32:7-5.

         4. When he arrived at his destination, Officer Poteracki located the stolen vehicle parked in the driveway of a duplex located at 873 23rd Street, in Ogden. Officer Poteracki notified Officer Nielsen that he had located the vehicle. Tr. 9-10; 32:10-17; Exh. 2.

         5. Officer Nielsen knew this to be the residence of defendant Miguel Lucero. Tr. 15:17-19.

         6. The residence is a house that has been converted into a duplex, with house numbers 871 and 873. Tr. 11-12:24.

         7. The duplex has an L-shaped configuration. The door to the 873 address, which is on the East side of the duplex, faces West and the door to the 871 address faces North. Tr. 12:1-18, 16:17-19, 64:13-22.

         8. The front porch of the duplex extends from the door of 873 to the door of 871. Tr. 12:1-23, 17:16-19.

         9. There is a window to the left, or east, of the porch. Tr. 12:5-14.

         10. A driveway is located on the East side of the duplex, next to the 873 address. It runs from the street to the back of duplex. Exh. 100.

         11. After receiving notification that Officer Poteracki had located the vehicle, Officer Nielsen responded to the duplex. He watched the front door while Officer Poteracki went to the ...


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