Com. v. Jeffers, No. 88-P-854

CourtAppeals Court of Massachusetts
Writing for the CourtBefore GREANEY
Citation539 N.E.2d 1040,27 Mass.App.Ct. 1162
PartiesCOMMONWEALTH v. Sybil JEFFERS (and two companion cases 1 ). Plymouth
Decision Date16 June 1989
Docket NumberNo. 88-P-854

Page 1040

539 N.E.2d 1040
27 Mass.App.Ct. 1162
COMMONWEALTH

v.
Sybil JEFFERS (and two companion cases 1).
No. 88-P-854.
Appeals Court of Massachusetts,
Plymouth.
Argued Dec. 13, 1988.
Decided June 16, 1989.

Page 1041

[27 Mass.App.Ct. 1164] Mary O'Sullivan Smith, Asst. Dist. Atty., for the Com.

Lee J. Fortier, Fairhaven, for Willie B. Jones.

Joan McDonough, Brockton, for Sybil Jeffers.

Before GREANEY, C.J., and CUTTER and PERRETTA, JJ.

RESCRIPT.

This is an authorized interlocutory appeal by the Commonwealth from orders of the Superior Court suppressing evidence seized during a warrantless search of the defendants' apartment. The judge made findings of fact upon which he concluded that, although the police were justified in entering the apartment, they were without justification to search it. On the facts found we conclude that the Commonwealth sustained its burden of showing the existence of exigent circumstances which excused the failure to obtain a warrant. We reverse.

1. We recite the facts as the judge found them. About 6:30 A.M., January 1, 1987, the victim told several Brockton police officers that he had just been robbed at gunpoint by two black men in an apartment to which he had been invited by a woman, subsequently identified as the defendant Jeffers, whom he had met moments earlier. He also told the officers that, while in the apartment, he saw two little children.

About five officers and the victim went to the apartment building. Two of the officers remained outside, and the others went with the victim to the second floor of the building. One of the officers knocked on the door indicated by the victim and announced himself as an officer. When Jeffers opened the door, the victim immediately identified her. The officers entered the apartment and quickly went into the rooms looking for the two male assailants. As they were passing from room to room, they saw a white male in a drunken, unconscious state on a couch and five children ranging in ages from thirteen to two years.

Moments after the police entered the apartment, they received a radio call from the two officers who had remained outside. They were chasing two men who had just run out of the building. The officers in the apartment ran out to join the chase, which

Page 1042

lasted less than a minute. The men were caught, and the victim identified them as his assailants. The officers searched the area of the chase and the grounds near the building, but they could not find the gun.

Jeffers was now standing in front of the building. When the officers arrested her, she asked if she could go back to her apartment, get a coat, and say good-bye to her children. Three of the officers accompanied Jeffers to her apartment where the white male and the five children had remained [27 Mass.App.Ct. 1163] during the pursuit. One of the officers was placed in...

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2 practice notes
  • Falmouth Nat. Bank v. Ticor Title Ins. Co., No. 90-1335
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • September 7, 1990
    ...as were necessary, including making adjustments for the passage of time and for the Buyer's improvements to the property. Id. at 230, 539 N.E.2d at 1040. As a result of the decision, the Bank made a claim to Ticor in a letter dated July 12, 1989 for payment of all losses. They set this amou......
  • Commonwealth v. Kenney, 972204
    • United States
    • Superior Court of Massachusetts
    • August 27, 1998
    ...crime had been committed by use of a gun which, there was reason to believe, could be found in the apartment. Commonwealth v. Jeffers, 27 Mass.App.Ct. 1162, 1163 (1989) (warrantless search of apartment for weapon used in armed robbery was justified by exigent circumstances). 3 He admitted t......
2 cases
  • Falmouth Nat. Bank v. Ticor Title Ins. Co., No. 90-1335
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (1st Circuit)
    • September 7, 1990
    ...as were necessary, including making adjustments for the passage of time and for the Buyer's improvements to the property. Id. at 230, 539 N.E.2d at 1040. As a result of the decision, the Bank made a claim to Ticor in a letter dated July 12, 1989 for payment of all losses. They set this amou......
  • Commonwealth v. Kenney, 972204
    • United States
    • Superior Court of Massachusetts
    • August 27, 1998
    ...crime had been committed by use of a gun which, there was reason to believe, could be found in the apartment. Commonwealth v. Jeffers, 27 Mass.App.Ct. 1162, 1163 (1989) (warrantless search of apartment for weapon used in armed robbery was justified by exigent circumstances). 3 He admitted t......

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