State v. Oyarzo

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Citation274 So.2d 519
Docket NumberNo. 42087,42087
PartiesSTATE of Florida, Petitioner, v. Crispitano Oyarzo OYARZO, Respondent.
Decision Date21 February 1973

Robert L. Shevin, Atty. Gen. and Charles Corces, Jr., Asst. Atty. Gen., for petitioner.

W. Daniel Kearney, Asst. Public Defender, for respondent.

BOYD, Justice.

This cause is before us on petition for writ of certiorari to review the decision of the District Court of Appeal, Second District, reported at 257 So.2d 108. The decision sought to be reviewed conflicts with Rhome v. State, 1 giving this Court jurisdiction under § 4, Article V of the Florida Constitution, F.S.A.

Defendant, respondent herein, was arrested in Tampa and charged in two counts with possession and sale of cocaine. The chain of events which led to defendant's arrest was initiated in Mexico by undercover agents of the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs. Defendant then brought the cocaine to Tampa aboard a Chilean vessel. After the vessel docked in Tampa, agents Sedillo and Gonzalez met defendant on the dock and again discussed the sale. He offered to sell the cocaine for $28,500.00 but later, when the agents returned to make the purchase, defendant told them that the cocaine had already been sold to another purchaser.

Defendant was arrested and advised of his rights in Spanish. All of the transactions between him and the agents were in Spanish and his Miranda warnings were read to him from a card printed in Spanish. The District Court of Appeal found, however, that despite the fact that he was given his Miranda warnings, that he had been misled by certain statements made by the agents to him and that this required reversal of the conviction. In its opinion the District Court stated: 2

'Ordinarily, this reading (of Miranda warnings) in Spanish would suffice. However, the record in this case shows that appellant may have been misled as to his actual situation. Agent Sedillo testified as follows:

'Q What transpired the first thirty minutes?

'A The first thirty minutes, we had a problem obtaining a key to the vehicle in which we were. There was quite a bit of confusion down at the terminal in getting this man to the U.S. Customs Office. And most of the time during that period, Observing that the defendant was in fear, I explained to him that he had nothing to fear, that we would protect him, that we would take care of him, and I would. And I explained to him our system under American laws as far as his rights, being a foreigner.

'Q He was in fear? He looked at you as his protector at that time, sir?

'A That is correct, sir. After I finished explaining it.' (Emphasis theirs)

'Oyarzo was advised of his rights by Agent Sedillo, who had previously been his friend and associate. The agent advised the accused of his rights, and then shortly thereafter told him there was nothing to fear. This was compliance with the form, but not the spirit, of the Miranda decision. Even though Oyarzo was correctly informed of his rights, it would not be unreasonable under the circumstances for him to think that he could make any statement without fear of the consequences. A statement should be excluded if the attending circumstances are calculated to delude the accused as to his true position or to exert improper or undue influence over his mind.'

The record shows that defendant was first advised of his rights within thirty minutes after the arrest at approximately 12:15 a.m. He was then taken to the U.S. Customs Office at 1:15 a.m. and at approximately 3:00 a.m., was again advised of his rights and signed a waiver. The interrogation at the U.S. Customs Office which resulted in the signed statement admitted into evidence, occurred after defendant had been advised the second time of his rights and had signed a waiver. Even if the first Miranda warning was rendered ineffective by the statements of agent Sedillo made at the time of defendant's arrest, the second warning, given more than two hours later, and prior to his giving and signing the statement in question, was effective to advise him of his rights.

In Rhome v. State, supra, the defendant made two sets of statements incriminating him in the crime of rape. The first set of statements was made to the police detective who first investigated the crime. That detective stated to the defendant that if the defendant would cooperate and try to help the detective find certain equipment or property that was purportedly taken from the victim, it would probably help the defendant. The second set of incriminating statements were made by the defendant at the police station after being interrogated by another police officer, who proceeded in a proper manner and informed the defendant of his rights. The trial court excluded all statements given to the first officer but...

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21 cases
  • Palmes v. State, 52045
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • March 5, 1981 that it is the jury's function to determine the weight to be accorded the confession in determining guilt. See, e. g., State v. Oyarzo, 274 So.2d 519 (Fla.1973); Graham v. State, 91 So.2d 662 (Fla.1956); Williams v. State, 156 Fla. 300, 22 So.2d 821 (1945); Nickels v. State, 90 Fla. 659,......
  • Palmes v. Wainwright, 83-3554
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (11th Circuit)
    • February 17, 1984
    ...5 We agree with the Florida Supreme Court's conclusion that under Florida law it was error to exclude this testimony. See State v. Oyarzo, 274 So.2d 519 (Fla.1973); Graham v. State, 91 So.2d 662 (Fla.1956); Bates v. State, 78 Fla. 672, 84 So. 373 The Florida Supreme Court and the United Sta......
  • Cannady v. State, 59974
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Florida
    • February 24, 1983
    ...friend is insufficient to show that his confession was improperly induced. Halliwell v. State, 323 So.2d 557 (Fla.1975); State v. Oyarzo, 274 So.2d 519 (Fla.1973). We therefore conclude there was sufficient evidence to support the trial judge's findings that the confession was freely and vo......
  • Nettles v. State, UU-209
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • January 18, 1982
    ...386 So.2d 232 (Fla.1980); Gaspard v. State, 387 So.2d 1016 (Fla. 1st DCA 1980); State v. Outten, 206 So.2d 392 (Fla.1968); State v. Oyarzo, 274 So.2d 519 (Fla.1973). Appellant next urges the confessions were fatally tainted because of Officer Hines' confusing comments regarding the right to......
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