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United States v. Washington

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois

April 24, 2014

United States, Plaintiff,
v.
Terrance T. Washington, Defendant.

ORDER

FREDERICK J. KAPALA, District Judge.

Defendant's motion to suppress evidence and alternative request for Franks hearing [39] is denied. This case, as well as 11 CR 50045, are set for status hearing on 4/25/2014 at 9 a.m.

STATEMENT

Defendant, Terrance T. Washington, is charged with conspiring to possess 28 grams of cocaine base, mixtures containing cocaine, and mixtures containing marijuana with intent to distribute in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 846; and possessing 28 grams of cocaine base on May 16, 2013, with intent to distribute in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1). Before the court is defendant's motion to suppress evidence and alternative request for a Franks hearing. For the reasons that follow, the motion is denied.

I. FACTS

On May 16, 2013, Deputy Kyle Boomer of the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department swore out a search warrant affidavit before the Honorable R. Craig Sahlstrom, an Associate Judge of the 17th Judicial Circuit, Winnebago County, Illinois. Deputy Boomer began his affidavit with the following language: "This affidavit is based on my personal knowledge, on my review of records and other material, including police reports obtained during the course of this investigation, as well as information provided to me [b]y other investigators." Deputy Boomer swore that:

Beginning in May 2013, members of the Winnebago County Sheriff's Police Metro Narcotics Unit began receiving information from concerned citizens regarding narcotic sales at 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois on a daily basis. These concerned citizens advised that unknown persons would arrive in the area in vehicles and go to the front door of 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois. These unknown persons would enter the residence through the front door and then remain at the residence for a short period of time before exiting the residence from the same front door and immediately leave the area. These concerned citizens wish to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation. In my experience this type of activity is indicative of narcotic sales.
Members of the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department Metro Narcotics Unit then performed periodic surveillance of 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois. During this periodic surveillance, we observed multiple unknown subjects arrive in vehicles at 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois. These unknown subjects would walk directly to the front door and then enter the residence. These subjects would remain inside the residence at 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois for approximately 4-5 minutes before exiting the residence through the same door and immediately leaving the area. In my experience as a police officer, the activities occurring at 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois are indicative of illegal narcotic sales.
On May 14, 2013, Deputy Kaiser and I conducted a trash recovery at 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois. Deputy Kaiser and I recovered two black plastic garbage bags from the end of the driveway, near the street, directly in front of 2844 Carol Place Rockford, Illinois. The two garbage bags were securely fastened and free of any rips or tears. Deputy Kaiser and I drove directly to the predetermined location with the two black garbage bags. Upon checking the contents of a single black garbage bag, I located a plastic case that contained a small amount of a green leafy substance, seeds, and stems. I located a document addressed to Terrance Washington 2844 Carol Place Rockford, IL and several torn plastic vacuum seal bags. I also located several plastic sandwich bags. One of the bags had the corner cut off and one of the bags contained a small amount of a green, leafy, substance and a stem.

According to Deputy Boomer's affidavit, the green leafy substance recovered from the trash bags later field tested positive for the probable presence of cannabis.

Judge Sahlstrom found that sufficient facts were presented to him to establish probable cause to search 2844 Carol Place (hereafter "the residence") and issued the search warrant. The warrant was served the same day and police recovered: a laptop computer; $1, 600 in U.S. currency, approximately 5.2 grams of cannabis, small plastic Ziploc bags with Superman logos, a blue Casio calculator and pieces of paper with names and money amounts, a metal barricade located behind the front door, a surveillance camera on the front of the residence, an open box of plastic sandwich bags, an open box of plastic gloves, an unopened bottle of Inositol powder, an open bottle of Inositol powder, and 13 cell phones.

II. ANALYSIS

Defendant seeks an order suppressing the items seized from the residence contending that the warrant affidavit was insufficient to establish probable cause, that the officers could not have relied upon the warrant in good faith, and that Deputy Boomer intentionally or recklessly ...


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