California Court of Appeals, Second District, Seventh Division
PROCEEDINGS in mandate Los Angeles County Super. Ct. No.
BA425880. Edmund W. Clarke, Jr., Judge. Petition denied.
Lacey, District Attorney, Steven Katz, Phyllis C. Asayama and
Scott D. Collins, Deputy District Attorneys, for Petitioner.
appearance for Respondent.
appearance for Real Party in Interest.
Acting P. J.
absence of exigent circumstances, if the police could have
obtained but did not obtain a warrant to search a
person's residence, and entered the person's
residence illegally based on an invalid consent, does the
fact that they could have obtained a warrant, or later
obtained a warrant when they wanted to return to search the
home again, excuse their failure to obtain a warrant before
the initial entry? The answer is no.
an unarmed alleged stalker was arrested inside the home of
his victim and then questioned extensively despite his
repeated invocation of his right to remain silent. The
police, aware from a records search that he had eight
firearms registered in his name, continued to question him
until he disclosed his address and the location where the
guns could be found, and signed a form consenting to the
search of his home. It is undisputed in this proceeding that
the suspect's assent to the search was not a meaningful
or valid consent.
parties agree that the police had probable cause to obtain a
search warrant before they entered the suspect's home,
and there is no dispute that officers had the opportunity to
seek a warrant but elected not to do so. They searched the
suspect's home and seized numerous firearms and
ammunition, including seven of the eight weapons listed in
the firearms registration record. The following day, relying
upon information gathered from the interrogation of the
suspect and facts learned from their earlier search of his
home, they obtained a search warrant for the suspect's
home, identifying two objects of the search: a gun safe they
saw during their initial entry, and the eighth firearm known
to be registered to the suspect but not located during the
warrantless search the day before.
trial court suppressed the evidence collected in the initial
search. The People seek a writ of mandate compelling the
court to vacate its ruling and to deny the motion to
suppress, arguing that because the police later obtained a
warrant after the initial search, the evidence in the
suspect's home would inevitably have been discovered. We
deny the petition.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
Corbett was arrested by officers of the Los Angeles Police
Department inside the home of Sandra Bullock on the morning
of June 8, 2014. He was charged with 26 offenses, two of
which concern the stalking of Bullock and the burglary of her
home; the remaining 24 counts are firearms-related offenses
concerning weapons, ammunition, and parts that were recovered
during the search of Corbett's home.
Incident, Arrest, Interrogation, and Initial Search
to the affidavit of probable cause in the search warrant
obtained on June 10, 2014, LAPD officers responded to
Bullock's residence at 6:35 a.m. on June 8, 2014, in
response to her report that a man wearing a dark sweatshirt
and dark pants was inside her home. Officers arriving at the
home found Corbett walking down the staircase. As he was
detained, he called out, “Sandy, ” several times
and said, “Sandy, I'm sorry. Please don't press
charges.” Corbett was arrested and taken into custody.
time of the arrest, according to the affidavit, Corbett
possessed a letter addressed to Bullock, a notebook with
multiple entries addressed to her, photographs of her from a
magazine, and a Utah concealed weapons permit. Corbett was
Juan Rodriguez arrested Corbett. Later that day, Rodriguez
obtained an emergency protective order; he served it on
Corbett at 12:08 p.m. on June 8, 2014. Rodriguez failed to
use the appropriate form for the emergency protective order,
instead using a form that had been superseded. Corbett
remained in police custody.
following day, June 9, at approximately 10:00 or 10:15 a.m.,
Detective Jeffrey Dunn questioned Corbett in jail in the
presence of Detective Christina Carlozzi, the primary
detective assigned to the case; psychologist Scott Watson;
and Detective Debbie Robles. At this time Corbett had been in
custody for approximately 30 hours. He was handcuffed during
the interrogation. He had not been given the opportunity to
make a telephone call.
to the interrogation, Dunn received the arrest records, the
face sheet of the emergency protective order, and a CLETS
document in response to an automated firearm system inquiry.
The CLETS printout provides information on firearms
registered to the subject of the report, and it indicated
that handguns were registered to Corbett. Also at this time,
according to Dunn, the terms of Corbett's
“restrictions pursuant to the emergency protective
order were available online, ” and he “based
[the] interview off that information.” From the
reports that were run, Dunn “learned that pursuant to
the emergency protective order [Corbett] was restricted from
possessing, owning, or having access to any firearm.”
interrogation was partially recorded. The recorded portion
begins with one officer advising Corbett of his
Miranda rights. Without asking Corbett whether he
wanted to waive those rights, the police asked Corbett,
“So, do you-you want to talk about what happened
with-with Sandy?” Corbett responded, “Not-not
really. I don't want to talk about it. No.” Dunn
asked, “You don't want to help us understand why
you were there?” and Corbett said, “Right, I
don't want to talk about it.”
responded, “Okay. Well, how about off the record? Do
you want to talk about it off the record? We can't use
anything that we've discussed.” Corbett again
stated that he did not want to talk about it.
then told Corbett that his letter to Bullock made him think
that there was more to the story than what Dunn had heard,
and that he did not “want to go to the District
Attorney and file, you know, felony burglary charges on you,
if there's another side of the story.” Corbett
acknowledged, “I did what I did. And I deserve to be
punished for it.” Dunn asked why Corbett needed to be
punished. Corbett said, “Well, I did what I did. I
don't know. I shouldn't have pushed the issue. I
don't want to talk about it.”
changed the subject to the emergency protective order and
firearms. He said that he knew that Corbett had “a
bunch of guns, right?” to which Corbett made a response
characterized by the transcriber as “Mmnh-mmnh.”
Dunn said, “So, we're gonna have to hold on to
those guns until this thing gets resolved. So, we can either
go there with your permission and voluntarily, you know,
surrender your guns.” Alternatively, Dunn told Corbett,
“we're gonna have to write a search warrant, in
which case we'll have to go into your house or your
apartment and search the entire location until we find the
weapons that we know you have there.”
urged, “Just tell us where the guns are, and we can go
get the guns. Or we'll have to write a search warrant and
we'll have to go, essentially, open everything and unlock
everything until we find what we're looking for.”
Corbett responded, “Mmnh-mmnh.”
told him that “it's however you want to play it,
” but that “[i]t's a whole lot easier if you
give us permission to get the guns, 'cause we're
gonna get them one way or the other.” Corbett made the
said, “[A]re you gonna tell us where the guns are
and-and how we can get our hands on them?” Corbett
answered, “You guys do what you have to do. I don't
know what to tell you.”
asked Corbett if he lived with his parents. Corbett said,
“Uh, no. I don't-I don't want to talk about
it.” Dunn said, “You don't want to talk about
anything?” Corbett said no.
continued anyway, telling Corbett that this was his one
chance to clear the air and tell his story. He reminded
Corbett that they had read his letter and his notes. Corbett
said, “I, obviously, got issues.” Dunn then began
asking about Corbett's mental health history, which
Corbett told the police was his own business. Dunn responded
that it was not exclusively Corbett's business because
now he was in custody. Corbett responded, “[S]he's
an innocent victim. And you guys do what you have to do.
That's all I have to say.”
innocent victim of what?” Dunn asked, and Corbett began
responding in a limited and brief manner to questions about
Bullock and his belief that she was not being protected
adequately by her security staff. Corbett acknowledged being
at Bullock's home and that he would be going to jail. He
denied intending to hurt Bullock and said he was devastated
that he had made her cry.
told Corbett that he knew Corbett was a good guy who had no
prior felony convictions, because if he had convictions, he
would not be permitted to have the handguns and long guns
that he knew Corbett had. “Right?” asked Dunn.
“Mmnh-mmnh, ” Corbett said.
asked more questions about Corbett's relationship with
Bullock, and then returned to Corbett's weapons, saying,
“So, what do you want me to do about your guns?”
Corbett responded unintelligibly. Dunn said, “I need to
get my hands on them until this whole thing is resolved.
Okay?” Corbett did not reply.
told Corbett, “And you can get them back. But, we got
to go through this whole process first. So, I can either go
there with your permission, or I'll have to write a
search warrant and I'll have to go there with a team and
do what we got to do to find them.” Corbett responded,
“Can I make a phone call? I haven't had a phone
told Corbett he could place a call after the interrogation
and then asked if he had roommates. Corbett's response
was transcribed as “Uhn-uhn.” “No?”
said Dunn. Corbett made no audible response.
know your mom and dad live locally, right?” asked Dunn.
Corbett said, “I guess. I don't know.” Dunn
asked if Corbett's parents had his guns, and Corbett said
he did not know. “You don't know where your guns
are?” asked Dunn, and Corbett was silent. Dunn said,
“So, you're going to make me go to your mom and
dad's house and serve a search warrant on your mom and
dad's house, too?” ...