Davenport v. State, No. 383S100

Docket NºNo. 383S100
Citation464 N.E.2d 1302
Case DateJuly 06, 1984
CourtSupreme Court of Indiana

Page 1302

464 N.E.2d 1302
Lonnal R. DAVENPORT, Appellant (Defendant below),
v.
STATE of Indiana, Appellee (Plaintiff below).
No. 383S100.
Supreme Court of Indiana.
July 6, 1984.

Page 1304

Aaron E. Haith, Choate Visher & Haith, Indianapolis, for appellant.

Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen., Michael Gene Worden, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellee.

HUNTER, Justice.

The defendant, Lonnal Davenport, was convicted by a jury of attempted murder, a Class A felony, Ind.Code Secs. 35-41-5-1, 35-42-1-1(1) (Burns 1979 Repl.) and possession of a controlled substance, a Class C felony, Ind.Code Sec. 35-48-4-6 (Burns 1984 Supp.). He was sentenced to the Indiana Department of Correction for concurrent terms of fifty and five years. In this direct appeal, he raises the following four issues:

1. Whether the trial court erred in denying defendant's motion to suppress certain evidence where the police officers allegedly did not announce their authority before breaking into his house;

2. Whether the trial court erred in failing to order disclosure of the identity of the police informant;

3. Whether there was sufficient evidence to support the convictions; and

4. Whether the trial court erred in refusing to grant a mistrial after certain prejudicial questions of the prosecutor.

A brief summary of the facts from the record most favorable to the state shows that Indiana state police officers obtained a search warrant for defendant's residence on January 19, 1982, for the purpose of finding controlled substances in the residence. They attempted to serve the warrant that afternoon but no one was at home at the residence. Later that evening, Officer

Page 1305

Steven Banks returned to the residence with several other officers in order to execute the search warrant. Banks testified that all of the officers were wearing civilian clothes and were driving a civilian automobile. He testified that he and two officers went to the front door and two other officers went to the side door. He stated that he knocked on the front door and that defendant came to the door and looked out the window but did not open the door.

Banks asked if he could speak to "Michele." Defendant at first said Michele wasn't there and then said yes and started to turn away. Banks asked defendant to wait and put his police I.D. up to the window of the door. Defendant looked at the I.D. a few seconds and then ran from the door. Banks then yelled "Police" and attempted to kick in the door. He acknowledged that he did not ever state that he had a search warrant. The officers guarding the side door then yelled "Police" and were successful in breaking into the house through that door.

Deputy McPherson was the first to enter and yelled "Police" again when he observed defendant running through the hall. Defendant did not stop but ran to the bedroom and returned with a gun. McPherson testified he heard defendant say "It's the pigs." When defendant returned to the hallway, he shot McPherson and another officer and was also wounded himself. McPherson suffered serious life-threatening injuries from defendant's shot at him. Banks subsequently executed the search warrant and found pills and syringes in a dresser drawer in the bedroom. The pills were found to contain hydromorphone, a Schedule II controlled substance.

I.

Defendant first contends that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress the evidence the police seized from his home. He argues that since the police officers did not announce their authority before entering his house, the search was improper and the evidence obtained should have been suppressed.

It is well settled that Indiana recognizes the "knock and announce" rule for the execution of arrest and search warrants. The rule requires that police knock and announce their authority and purpose before forcing entry into a home. Miller v. United States, (1958) 357 U.S. 301, 78 S.Ct. 1190, 2 L.Ed.2d 1332; State v. Dusch, (1972) 259 Ind. 507, 289 N.E.2d 515. It is also well settled that this knock and announce requirement is not to be adhered to blindly regardless of the particular circumstances confronting the authorities at the time the search is to be conducted. State v. Dusch, 259 Ind. at 512, 289 N.E.2d at 517. Whether a search and seizure is unreasonable within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment depends upon the facts and circumstances of each case. Highsaw v. State, (1978) 269 Ind. 458, 381 N.E.2d 470, cert. denied, 442 U.S. 941, 99 S.Ct. 2884, 61 L.Ed.2d 311 (1979).

The defendant and the state agree that the officers here did not announce their purpose. However, as the state points out, the police are not always required to give notice of their purpose if exigent circumstances exist. The United States Supreme Court has held that exigent circumstances exist if "those within, made aware of the presence of someone outside (because, for example, there has been a knock at the door), are then engaged in activity which justifies the officers in the belief that an escape or the destruction of evidence is being attempted." Ker v. California, (1963) 374 U.S. 23, 47, 83 S.Ct. 1623, 1636, 10 L.Ed.2d 726, 746. See also Cannon v. State, (1980) Ind.App., 414 N.E.2d 578.

In this case, at the hearing on the motion to suppress, the state presented testimony to show that the police officers had knocked on the door and that Officer Banks had shown his I.D. to defendant. Banks testified that defendant then ran toward the back of the house, and his testimony was corroborated by the other officers. Defendant's action at that time did present exigent circumstances, for the police could reasonably fear that he was attempting

Page 1306

to escape or to destroy the illicit drugs. The particular exigent circumstances of this case relieved the police officers from having to announce their authority. They validly entered the house to execute their search warrant for drugs.

II.

Defendant next contends the trial court erred in denying his motion for disclosure of the identity of the confidential informant. Defendant raises this issue as fundamental error although he did not assert it in his motion to correct errors. He feels that the informant's identity was crucial to an attack on the search warrant as the state relied upon her credibility. He further argues that he believes that an individual named Michele Moppin was the police informant and that he was not on good terms with Michele. He testified that Michele brought ten pills to his house and asked him to hold them for her on the day before the police executed the search warrant. Defendant feels that Michele "set him up" in order to get favorable treatment on a similar charge against herself.

It is well settled that the general policy in Indiana is to prevent disclosure of an informant's identity unless the defense can demonstrate that disclosure is relevant and helpful to the defense or is necessary to a fair trial. Powers v. State, (1982) Ind., 440 N.E.2d 1096; Ryan v. State, (1982) Ind., 431 N.E.2d 115. Since the state has the privilege to withhold the identity of an informer, the burden is upon the defendant seeking disclosure to demonstrate exception to the privilege that the informer remain anonymous. Lewandowski...

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61 practice notes
  • Turner v. Sheriff of Marion County, No. IP97-2013-C-F/D.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court (Southern District of Indiana)
    • March 1, 2000
    ...officers to knock and announce their authority and purpose before conducting a search. Moran, 644 N.E.2d at 539; Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1305 (Ind.), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 1043, 105 S.Ct. 529, 83 L.Ed.2d 416 (1984); State v. Dusch, 259 Ind. 507, 512, 514, 289 N.E.2d 515, 517, ......
  • Maravilla v. US, No. 2:93-CV-129-RL.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court of Northern District of Indiana
    • October 17, 1994
    ...general requirement that officers knock and announce themselves before entering a dwelling to execute a warrant. See Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1305 (Ind.1984), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 1043, 105 S.Ct. 529, 83 L.Ed.2d 416 (1984); Crabtree v. State, 479 N.E.2d 70, 73-74 (Ind.Ct.App.1......
  • Lampkins v. State, No. 18S04-9609-CR-597
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • June 27, 1997
    ...the defendant's knowledge of the nature of the controlled substances and their presence. Fassoth, 525 N.E.2d at 323; Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1307 (Ind.1984). See Carnes v. State, 480 N.E.2d 581, 586 (Ind.Ct.App.1985) (listing additional circumstances and cases in support thereo......
  • Carnes v. State, No. 2-283A37
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • July 23, 1985
    ...reasonably inferred from the possession alone. Rather, the inference must be supported by additional circumstances. Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302 Numerous additional circumstances have been deemed sufficient to allow a trier of fact to reasonably draw the requisite inference of the de......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
61 cases
  • Turner v. Sheriff of Marion County, No. IP97-2013-C-F/D.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court (Southern District of Indiana)
    • March 1, 2000
    ...officers to knock and announce their authority and purpose before conducting a search. Moran, 644 N.E.2d at 539; Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1305 (Ind.), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 1043, 105 S.Ct. 529, 83 L.Ed.2d 416 (1984); State v. Dusch, 259 Ind. 507, 512, 514, 289 N.E.2d 515, 517, ......
  • Maravilla v. US, No. 2:93-CV-129-RL.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 7th Circuit. United States District Court of Northern District of Indiana
    • October 17, 1994
    ...general requirement that officers knock and announce themselves before entering a dwelling to execute a warrant. See Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1305 (Ind.1984), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 1043, 105 S.Ct. 529, 83 L.Ed.2d 416 (1984); Crabtree v. State, 479 N.E.2d 70, 73-74 (Ind.Ct.App.1......
  • Lampkins v. State, No. 18S04-9609-CR-597
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • June 27, 1997
    ...the defendant's knowledge of the nature of the controlled substances and their presence. Fassoth, 525 N.E.2d at 323; Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302, 1307 (Ind.1984). See Carnes v. State, 480 N.E.2d 581, 586 (Ind.Ct.App.1985) (listing additional circumstances and cases in support thereo......
  • Carnes v. State, No. 2-283A37
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • July 23, 1985
    ...reasonably inferred from the possession alone. Rather, the inference must be supported by additional circumstances. Davenport v. State, 464 N.E.2d 1302 Numerous additional circumstances have been deemed sufficient to allow a trier of fact to reasonably draw the requisite inference of the de......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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