Robinson v. State, Case No. 1D03-4701 (FL 8/18/2004), Case No. 1D03-4701.

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtPer Curiam
PartiesKENDRICK ROBINSON, Appellant, v. STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellee.
Decision Date18 August 2004
Docket NumberCase No. 1D03-4701.

Page 1

KENDRICK ROBINSON, Appellant,
v.
STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellee.
Case No. 1D03-4701.
District Court of Appeal of Florida, First District.
Opinion filed August 18, 2004.

An appeal from the Circuit Court for Hamilton County, John W. Peach, Judge.

Nancy A. Daniels, Public Defender, and Paula S. Saunders, Assistant Public Defender, Tallahassee, for Appellant.

Charles J. Crist, Jr., Attorney General, and Charlie McCoy, Senior Assistant Attorney General, Tallahassee, for Appellee.

PER CURIAM.


Appellant, Kendrick Robinson, appeals from his conviction following his nolo contendere plea to one count of possession of methamphetamine. Appellant's plea was conditioned on the reservation of his right to appeal the denial of his motion to suppress, which is dispositive of the case. We reverse the denial of the motion with directions that the judgment and sentence be vacated.

Appellant was arrested May 6, 2003, and charged with possession of one pill of methamphetamine, a controlled substance, and resisting arrest without violence. In his motion to suppress evidence, appellant alleged that officers improperly arrested him on a warrant for violation of probation which had been served six days earlier, and was no longer active. The motion states that the same sheriff's office that arrested appellant on May 6, 2003, served the warrant six days earlier in circuit case 01-140CF. Appellant cited State v. White, 660 So. 2d 664 (Fla. 1995), for the proposition that his arrest was illegal because there was no active or valid warrant for his arrest.

The narrative portions of the reports prepared in connection with appellant's arrest reveal that the arresting officers observed appellant standing on the sidewalk at Buddy Parker Park in Jasper, Florida. The officers believed there was an active warrant for appellant's arrest and approached him for that reason. When the officers approached, appellant fled on foot. The officers gave chase, apprehended appellant, and placed him under arrest. During the ensuing search, a methamphetamine pill was discovered in appellant's possession. The methamphetamine pill is the subject of the motion to suppress evidence.

At the suppression hearing, the prosecutor advised the trial court that "officers arrested Mr. Robinson under the belief that he had an active warrant. Upon arresting him, they found drugs and he was arrested on that charge as well." Defense counsel advised the court that six days prior to the arrest underlying this appeal, appellant was served with the warrant and a violation of probation hearing was held. Thus, there was no active warrant in existence on May 6, 2003, to justify appellant's arrest and the search which resulted in the discovery of the contraband. The prosecutor stipulated to the facts recited by defense counsel, but urged that appellant's flight raised suspicion that criminal activity was afoot, thus the seizure of drugs following appellant's arrest was proper. According to the prosecutor, the officers did not announce that they had a warrant; rather, they believed a valid warrant was outstanding when they approached appellant.

The facts underlying the motion to suppress were presented through representations and stipulations offered by the prosecutor and defense counsel. The trial court denied the motion to suppress `without prejudice.' The court's transcribed comments suggest the court would be receptive to further defense challenges to the propriety of the...

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