Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, Joseph M. Moothart, District Associate Judge.
Keith Gogel appeals from his convictions for possession of methamphetamine and unlawful possession of prescription drugs, arguing the contraband found in his car after a search during a traffic stop should have been suppressed.
Kevin E. Schoeberl of Story & Schoeberl Law Firm, Cresco, for appellant.
Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, John B. McCormally, Assistant Attorney General, Thomas J. Ferguson, County Attorney, and Brian Williams, Assistant County Attorney, for appellee.
Considered by Doyle, P.J., and Danilson and Mullins, JJ.
Keith Gogel appeals from his convictions for possession of methamphetamine and unlawful possession of prescription drugs, arguing the contraband found in his car after a search during a traffic stop should have been suppressed. We agree and, therefore, reverse the judgment of the district court and remand the case to the district court for further proceedings.
I. Background Facts and Proceedings.
Keith Gogel's car was searched during a traffic stop, and methamphetamine was discovered. Gogel moved to suppress the evidence, challenging the legality of the search under the search and seizure clauses of the Iowa and Federal Constitutions. The district court denied his motion to suppress, and Gogel's subsequent application for interlocutory appeal was denied by the Iowa Supreme Court.
After a bench trial on the minutes of testimony, the district court entered its ruling concluding Gogel voluntarily consented to the search of his vehicle. The court found:
The preponderance of credible evidence presented at the hearing on the motion proved that on October 4, 2009, . . . Police Officer Andrew Nissen effected an investigatory stop of [Gogel's] vehicle . . . after obtaining a radar reading of [fifty] miles-per-hour in a [thirty-five] mile-per-hour zone. The officer approached [Gogel's] vehicle. [Gogel] was seated in the driver's seat. The officer asked [Gogel] if he knew the reason for the stop and that [he] was speeding. [Gogel] answered in the affirmative. [Gogel] provided the officer with his driver's license. The officer went to his law enforcement vehicle to run a check on the . . . license.
The officer had observed [Gogel] to be fidgety and nervous. [Gogel] also seemed to mumble and did not look directly at the officer. The officer knew that fidgeting was consistent with being a methamphetamine user. The officer had observed that [Gogel] was missing teeth, which was also consistent with being a methamphetamine user.
The officer observed [Gogel] in the vehicle reaching for the center console and the glove box. The computer check did not reflect a history of drug usage. The officer returned to [Gogel's] vehicle and advised [Gogel] that he was [issuing him a speeding ticket but was] reducing the speed to [only ten miles-per-hour] over [the limit].
The officer asked [Gogel] if he had anything in the vehicle that he was not supposed to have. [Gogel] answered that he did not. The officer asked if he could search the vehicle. [Gogel] waived his attorney's card and indicated that he had never had to use it. [Gogel] began to read from the attorney's card. The officer ...