Court of Appeals of Illinois, First District, First Division
from the Circuit Court of Cook County. No. 13 CR 18626
Honorable Thomas Hennelly, Judge Presiding.
PRESIDING JUSTICE CONNORS delivered the judgment of the
court, with opinion. Justices Harris and Mikva concurred in
the judgment and opinion.
CONNORS, PRESIDING JUSTICE
1 Following a bench trial, defendant Derrick Martin was
convicted of possession of a controlled substance and
sentenced to five years in prison. On appeal, defendant
contends the trial court erred in denying his motion to
suppress evidence seized during a warrantless search. We
2 The record reveals that following an alleged drug
transaction that occurred on June 9, 2013, defendant was
charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent
to deliver and delivery of a controlled substance. Before
trial, defendant filed a motion to quash arrest and suppress
evidence. In this motion, defendant stated that on June 9,
2013, police officers entered and searched the building
located at 5154 West Fulton Street in Chicago without a
search warrant and without consent.
3 At the hearing on the motion, defendant's mother,
Perlene West, testified that she owned the two-flat building
located at 5154 West Fulton. West stated that she lived on
the first floor and no one currently lived on the second
floor. West also testified that no one lived on the second
floor on June 9, 2013. Defendant, who occasionally stayed
with West, had stayed overnight with his girlfriend in
West's apartment the night before June 9. West further
described the building, which had a door on the outside and
was surrounded by a fence with a gate. West also identified a
photograph of her building. West stated that beyond the outer
door were two interior doors- one to the right that led to
West's apartment and one to the left that went up the
stairs. According to West, the hallway area between the outer
door and interior doors was a private area and not public.
West stated that the building was her home and denied that
anyone could just walk in. West stated that she has a
"no trespassing" sign in the window of her home and
that the sign was up on June 9. West also stated that the
front door has a lock, and she locks it using a key. West
recalled that on June 9, police officers did not have her
permission to search anywhere in the building.
4 Officer Manjarrez testified that at approximately 4:26 p.m.
on June 9, he was conducting a narcotics surveillance mission
with Officer Collarzo in the area of 5154 West Fulton.
Defendant was in a vacant lot just west of 5154 West Fulton.
Officer Manjarrez observed a man, who was later identified as
Dwayne Mason, approach defendant and raise his right index
finger, whereupon defendant acknowledged the gesture and
entered the main doorframe of 5154 West Fulton. Officer
Manjarrez stated that the door to 5154 West Fulton was
slightly ajar. Defendant stood on the immediate threshold and
reached into the door inside of the doorframe. Defendant
retrieved a blue plastic bag, manipulated it, and then
retrieved a smaller unknown item from the bag. Officer
Manjarrez acknowledged that he could not actually see where
the bag came from and could not tell what the item was that
defendant took from the bag. Defendant then placed the bag on
top of the door and returned to Mason, where he received
money from Mason and tendered the small unknown item.
Defendant tendered the money to another male who was standing
outside of 5154 West Fulton.
5 At that point, Officer Manjarrez broke surveillance and
approached Mason. During a conversation, Mason stated,
"I only got one blow from him" and freely tendered
to Officer Collarzo a red-tinted Ziploc bag with a bomb logo
that said "stay high imagine" on it. The bag
contained a white powdery substance that was suspected to be
heroin. Mason was placed in custody and the officers
relocated to defendant, who was also placed in custody.
Officer Manjarrez indicated to another officer, Officer
Warner, where to recover the blue bag. Officer Manjarrez
stayed with defendant at the bottom of the stairs of 5154
West Fulton and observed Officer Warner go up the stairs.
Officer Warner related that the door was open. Officer Warner
reached above the doorframe on the inside of the door and
recovered the blue bag. Officer Manjarrez observed that the
items inside the blue bag matched the suspect narcotics that
were recovered from Mason. Officer Manjarrez also stated that
the item that Officer Warner recovered was from the same area
where he observed defendant place the item. Additionally,
Officer Manjarrez stated that once the door was open, he
observed that the front door opened into a vestibule or
common area that had another door, leading into the
residence. The parties stipulated that the officers did not
have a warrant.
6 After defendant rested, the State moved for a directed
finding, contending in part that there was no expectation of
privacy on the inside of the doorframe and the officers did
not enter the home. In response, defense counsel contended in
part that 5154 West Fulton was a private home and the area at
issue was not a common area.
7 The court denied defendant's motion to quash and
suppress. In its ruling, the court stated that the officer
reached into the doorway of a common area of a two-flat and
the officer did not enter the home. The court continued that
"even assuming arguendo, there's plenty of
probable cause based on Officer Manjarrez's observations
of the transaction." The court also stated that it did
not think that defendant established standing.
8 Prior to trial, defense counsel orally moved to reconsider
the ruling on the motion to quash and suppress. Defense
counsel stated in part that defendant's mother owned the
entire building, she lived on the first floor, and no one was
occupying the second floor. Defense counsel asserted that
"[i]t's not your typical common area, " and
moreover, West had a "no trespassing" sign and the
building was surrounded by a fence, which could be considered
curtilage. Additionally, defense counsel stated that there
were no exigent circumstances. The court denied the motion to
9 The matter proceeded to trial. The State called as a
witness Officer Manjarrez, whose testimony was substantially
similar to his testimony at the hearing on defendant's
motion to quash and suppress. Additionally, Officer Manjarrez
stated that after he broke surveillance, he lost sight of the
man who had received money from defendant.
10 Officer Warner also testified, stating that he went to the
vicinity of 5154 West Fulton at Officer Manjarrez's
request. Based on a conversation with Officer Manjarrez,
Officer Warner searched the door and corridor of the
building. Officer Warner looked in the door frame, where he
found a blue bag containing five clear Ziploc bags with
"Stay High" logos that contained suspect heroin.
Officer Warner noted that he could not see through the bag
and had to open it to see its contents. Officer Warner stated
that he found the bag at the top of doorframe inside the
building. Officer Warner further recalled that the blue bag
was "protruding out like a piece of *** wood at the top
of the door frame" and was sticking up.
11 The parties entered stipulations about the chain of
custody and the chemical composition of the recovered
substance. The parties stipulated that all proper chains of
custody were followed. The parties also stipulated that a
forensic chemist would testify that 1.4 grams of powder from