United States District Court, N.D. Iowa, Western Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER ON REPORT AND
Leonard T. Strand, Chief Judge
case is before me on a Report and Recommendation (R&R)
filed on September 19, 2017, by the Honorable Kelly K.E.
Mahoney, United States Magistrate Judge. See Doc.
No. 57. Judge Mahoney recommends that I grant defendant's
motion (Doc. No. 42) to suppress statements he made during a
custodial interrogation in violation of Miranda v.
Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966) . Neither party has filed
objections. The time to make such objections has expired.
is charged with possession of a firearm by a felon in
violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(1) and 924(a)(2).
He filed his motion (Doc. No. 42) to suppress on July 28,
2017. The Government filed a resistance (Doc. No. 45) on
August 11, 2017. Defendant filed a reply (Doc. No. 52) on
August 18, 2017 and the Government filed a second response
(Doc. No. 53) on August 23, 2017. Judge Mahoney held a
hearing on August 30, 2017. The following exhibits were
admitted into evidence:
• Government Exhibit 1 - Video of the interview room at
the Sergeant Bluff Police Department
• Government Exhibit 2 - Video of the booking room at
the Woodbury County Jail
• Government Exhibit 3 - A Toxicology Report from DCI
Crime Lab (Doc. No. 46)
• Defense Exhibit A - A Sergeant Bluff Police Report
(Doc. No. 42-2)
• Defense Exhibit B - Video from an Officer's Body
Cam (Doc. No. 42-3)
• Defense Exhibit C - Audio recording of McPherson's
interview at the Woodbury County Jail (Doc. No. 42-4)
• Defense Exhibit D - Transcript of McPherson's
interview at the Woodbury County Jail (Doc. No. 42-5)
Mahoney provided the following background in her R&R:
On the morning of October 20, 2016, McPherson was approached
while apparently sleeping inside a vehicle. Def. Ex. B,
02:00. During the encounter, an officer shot at (and missed)
McPherson and thereafter found a firearm in his waistband.
McPherson was taken to an interview room at the Sergeant
Bluff, Iowa, police department by Woodbury County, Iowa,
Sheriff's Deputy Todd Peterson. Upon entering the
interview room, McPherson told Deputy Peterson, “I want
a lawyer first.” Govt. Ex. 1, 9:47:28. Deputy Peterson
responded that they were only there to “get [McPherson]
more comfortable so [he's] not smashed up in the back of
th[e] car.” A few minutes later, Deputy Peterson asked
McPherson something further about his attorney, although it
is unclear what prompted this question. Govt. Ex. 1,
9:56:10. A few minutes after that, McPherson said that he was
not going to answer any questions, and Deputy Peterson
responded that he was not going to ask any. Govt. Ex. 1,
9:59:05. The pair then discussed whether Deputy Peterson
should read McPherson his Miranda rights, including
whether McPherson was detained or under arrest and whether
the distinction mattered. When Deputy Peterson remarked that
he did not want McPherson to say something he regretted,
McPherson said that he was talking to a lawyer first. Govt.
Ex. 1, 10:00:00. Shortly thereafter, McPherson ...