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State of Idaho v. Dupree L. Meadows

July 5, 2012

STATE OF IDAHO,
PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
DUPREE L. MEADOWS, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the District Court of the First Judicial District, State of Idaho, Kootenai County. Hon. Fred M. Gibler, District Judge.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gutierrez, Judge

2012 Unpublished Opinion No. 549

Stephen W. Kenyon, Clerk

THIS IS AN UNPUBLISHED OPINION AND SHALL NOT BE CITED AS AUTHORITY

Judgment of conviction for burglary; felony destruction, alteration, or concealment of evidence; and being a persistent violator, affirmed; judgment of conviction for resisting or obstructing officers, vacated.

Dupree L. Meadows appeals from his judgments of conviction entered upon a jury verdict finding him guilty of burglary; felony destruction, alteration, or concealment of evidence; and resisting or obstructing officers, and the district court's finding that he was a persistent violator. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm in part and vacate in part.

I. FACTS AND PROCEDURE

Several people attending a house party were standing outside when they saw Meadows, who had left the party fifteen to twenty minutes earlier, standing near the host's truck and interpreted his actions as suspicious. Later, the truck's owner noticed several items were missing from the truck and went to Meadows' apartment complex where he saw several of his items in Meadows' parked vehicle. The truck's owner called the police, who arrived on the scene and knocked on Meadows' apartment door. Meadows consented to their entry into the apartment as far as the entryway. The officers questioned Meadows as to the burglary, but he denied involvement and became agitated. Eventually, the officers advised Meadows he was under arrest, but Meadows refused to immediately comply with the officers' orders to turn around and place his hands behind his back, instead sitting down on the sofa. The officers eventually succeeded in arresting him.

Following the arrest, the victim and the officers found items belonging to the victim in a community dumpster at Meadows' apartment complex. After obtaining a search warrant, officers found additional items from the victim's truck in Meadows' vehicle. Other items were found on the patio of Meadows' apartment.

Meadows was charged with burglary, Idaho Code § 18-1401; felony concealment of evidence, Idaho Code § 18-2603; obstructing officers, Idaho Code § 18-705; and being a persistent violator, Idaho Code § 19-2514. Meadows filed a motion to suppress all evidence "obtained as a result of the detention, arrest, search, seizure, and subsequent questioning of the Defendant," alleging the officers lacked probable cause to arrest him and did not comply with the revocation of his consent to their presence in the apartment. Following a hearing, the district court denied the motion. Except for the persistent violator enhancement, which was determined by the district court, a jury found Meadows guilty of all charges. Meadows now appeals.

II. ANALYSIS

Meadows contends the district court erred in denying his motion to suppress. He also argues there was insufficient evidence to support a finding that he had the requisite intent to be convicted of felony concealment of evidence, or, in the alternative, the requisite facts comprising a felony concealment of evidence charge were not charged and were not found by the jury. Finally, he contends there existed a fatal variance in that the charging document varied from the jury instructions and evidence presented at trial in regard to the obstructing officers charge.

A. Motion to Suppress

Meadows contends the district court erred in denying his motion to suppress because the officers exceeded the scope of his consent when they entered further into the apartment, beyond the entrance area, to arrest Meadows and/or because his consent to the officers' entry had been revoked. The standard of review of a suppression motion is bifurcated. When a decision on a motion to suppress is challenged, we accept the trial court's findings of fact supported by substantial evidence, but we freely review the application of constitutional principles to the facts as found. State v. Atkinson, 128 Idaho 559, 561, 916 P.2d 1284, 1286 (Ct. App. 1996). At a suppression hearing, the power to assess the credibility of witnesses, resolve factual conflicts, weigh evidence, and draw factual inferences is vested in the trial court. State v. Valdez-Molina, 127 Idaho 102, 106, 897 P.2d 993, 997 (1995); State v. Schevers, 132 Idaho 786, 789, 979 P.2d 659, 662 (Ct. App. 1999).

We need not consider the merits of Meadows' contention, however, because even if the officers arrested him in violation of the Fourth Amendment, he has failed to identify what evidence should have been suppressed; specifically, he has failed to identify any evidence acquired through the alleged illegal entry and arrest and no such evidence is apparent from the record. As the State points out, the officers did not obtain any substantive evidence as a result of entering the house to arrest Meadows: Meadows did not make any inculpatory statements and no contraband was found inside his apartment. Accordingly, we will not address this issue on appeal. See State v. Hudson, 133 Idaho 543, 545, 989 P.2d 285, 287 (1999).

B. Sufficiency of the Evidence

Meadows contends there was insufficient evidence to support the felony concealment of evidence conviction. Specifically, he contends there was insufficient evidence for a jury to find that when he threw out several "worthless" items he stole from the victim's truck, he had the specific intent to prevent the items from being used as evidence.

Appellate review of the sufficiency of the evidence is limited in scope. A finding of guilt will not be overturned on appeal where there is substantial evidence upon which a reasonable trier of fact could have found the prosecution sustained its burden of proving the essential elements of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt. State v. Herrera-Brito, 131 Idaho 383, 385, 957 P.2d 1099, 1101 (Ct. App. 1998); State v. Knutson, 121 Idaho 101, 104, 822 P.2d 998, 1001 (Ct. App. 1991). We will not substitute our view for that of the trier of fact as to the credibility of the witnesses, the weight to be given to the testimony, and the reasonable inferences to be drawn from the evidence. Knutson, 121 Idaho at 104, 822 P.2d at 1001; State v. Decker, 108 Idaho 683, 684, 701 P.2d 303, 304 ...


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