from the Iowa District Court for Woodbury County, Duane E.
Hoffmeyer (motion to suppress) and Jeffrey A. Neary (trial
and sentencing), Judges.
Hodges appeals his drug-offense convictions. AFFIRMED.
Conrad Douglas, Sioux City, for appellant.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Genevieve Reinkoester,
Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.
Considered by Doyle, P.J., and Tabor and McDonald, JJ.
Hodges appeals his convictions for possession with intent to
deliver (marijuana), in violation of Iowa Code section
124.401(1)(d) (2016), and failure to affix a drug tax stamp,
in violation of section 453B.12, both class "D"
felonies. On appeal, Hodges argues the district court erred
in overruling his motion to suppress. He claims his arrest by
a Plymouth County deputy sheriff in Woodbury County was an
unlawful extraterritorial arrest and, therefore, any evidence
derived as a result of the traffic stop should have been
suppressed. Under the facts presented, we conclude the deputy
had authority to stop the truck in which Hodges was a
passenger, and to arrest Hodges. We affirm the district
Factual Background and Proceedings.
30, 2016, Plymouth County Deputy Sheriff Jake Wingert
observed a pickup truck traveling northbound on Frelon Drive
in Plymouth County. As the truck passed by, the deputy
noticed two male occupants and took note of the license plate
number. As the deputy ran the plate in his computer, he
observed the truck turn onto Highway 75 and begin traveling
south towards Sioux City into Woodbury County. After running
the plate information into the computer system, the deputy
received information indicating that the owner (a male) had a
suspended Iowa driver's license. The deputy followed the
truck while waiting for the information from the computer,
and after receiving the suspended-license information, the
deputy pursued the truck because, he testified, he believed
that the registered owner could be the driver.
Wingert made contact with Woodbury County Deputy Nate Sands.
Deputy Wingert communicated to Deputy Sands that he was in
pursuit of a vehicle traveling southbound on Highway 75 that
he believed was driven by the owner, who had a suspended
license. Deputy Sands informed Deputy Wingert that he was out
of position but to go ahead and stop the vehicle and Deputy
Sanders would join as soon as he was able to get to the
time later, Deputy Wingert initiated a traffic stop on the
Highway 75 exit onto Gordon Drive in Sioux City. Deputy
I approached the driver's side window of the vehicle and
spoke to the occupants. Prior to doing that, I did watch the
front passenger in the truck appear to be reaching down and
either grabbing or moving something. While speaking to the
individuals at the window of the vehicle, I immediately
detected the heavy odor of marijuana. They informed me that
the registered owner of the vehicle was currently not with
them and they had borrowed his vehicle. . . . The driver . .
. was identified . . . [and] I took him back to my patrol
vehicle and had him have a seat in the front passenger's
area. I then reported to the passenger's seat area and
asked the passenger to get out. The passenger was identified
as Nicholas Ray Hodges. He did not currently have an ID with
him. I spoke to him for a short time in reference to the odor
of marijuana and he informed me while speaking to him that it
was in the middle console area of the vehicle and that he was
the owner of it. He was asked to sit against the front bumper
of my patrol vehicle. A short time later, I was joined by
Deputy Sands from Woodbury County and also Sgt. Bauerly from
While at my patrol vehicle, I spoke with the driver of the
vehicle and he informed me that any marijuana in the vehicle
was not his and claimed he did not know of it. He also was
unable to provide insurance for the vehicle. Deputy Sands
spoke to the individual at the front of my patrol vehicle for
a short time and came back to my window and informed me that
he was just going to retrieve the marijuana from the vehicle,
as the driver told him there was approximately three ounces
of marijuana. Deputy Sands then retrieved a bag of marijuana
that was stuffed between the passenger's seat and the
middle seat area on the floor. Deputy Sands informed me that
this marijuana was in closest proximity to the passenger who
had claimed ownership of it and had identified the
approximate weight to him. When Deputy Sands presented me
with the marijuana, it was in a bag approximately the size of
my hand. The marijuana was very tightly compressed and
appeared to have recently been cut off a larger brick of
marijuana. Deputy Sands also looked through the vehicle and
was unable to find any other drug paraphernalia or smoking
devices. The driver of the vehicle was released with a verbal
warning for not having current insurance and was allowed to
leave the scene. The passenger, Nicholas Ray Hodges, was
transported to the Plymouth County Jail. . . .
While on the scene prior to getting in my vehicle, Mr. Hodges
was read his Miranda rights. He was seated in the
rear of my patrol vehicle prior to being transported to the
Plymouth County Jail. Upon arrival to the jail, he was placed
in the jail's custody. The marijuana confiscated was
found to weigh approximately 100 grams. Nicholas Hodges was
charged with possession of ...