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State v. Peaslee

Court of Appeals of Idaho

September 20, 2013

STATE OF IDAHO, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
BRANDON JOSHUA PEASLEE, Defendant-Appellant.

UNPUBLISHED OPINION

2013 Unpublished Opinion No. 674

Appeal from the District Court of the Fourth Judicial District, State of Idaho, Ada County. Hon. Deborah A. Bail, District Judge.

Eric D. Fredericksen of Brady Law, Chtd., Boise, for appellant.

Hon. Lawrence G. Wasden, Attorney General; Lori A. Fleming, Deputy Attorney General, Boise, for respondent.

MELANSON, JUDGE

Brandon Joshua Peaslee appeals from his judgment of conviction and unified life sentence, with a minimum period of confinement of ten years, for conspiracy to commit robbery. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm.

I. FACTS AND PROCEDURE

In May 2011, Peaslee and a co-conspirator attempted to rob a convenience store in Garden City. Peaslee drove the co-conspirator to the store and provided him with a shotgun. Outside the store, the co-conspirator loaded a round into the shotgun and the shotgun jammed. However, Peaslee fixed the shotgun, making it operational again, and returned it to the co-conspirator who successfully loaded it. Peaslee waited outside while the co-conspirator entered the store to commit the robbery. The co-conspirator entered the store and demanded money from the clerk. When the clerk was unable to open the safe, the co-conspirator fired multiple times, hitting the clerk in the arm and chest. The co-conspirator then fled the store.

Following the incident, police in Garden City received tips leading them to interview the co-conspirator. During the interview, the co-conspirator implicated Peaslee. An officer contacted Peaslee and requested to speak with him in person. Peaslee suggested meeting at the Mountain Home Police Department or Elmore County Sheriff's Office because Peaslee was visiting his girlfriend in the Mountain Home area. Officers agreed and Peaslee drove himself to the Elmore County Sheriff's Office. There, Peaslee was met by two officers who performed a pat-down search for weapons, then escorted Peaslee inside the building. At the beginning of the interview, one of the officers informed Peaslee he was not under arrest. Officers then interviewed Peaslee for approximately forty minutes. While Peaslee initially denied any knowledge of the robbery, he eventually admitted his involvement. Peaslee wrote out and signed a confession. Peaslee also consented to a search of his car. Inside the vehicle, officers located two loaded shotguns, ammunition, a ski mask, and gloves.

A grand jury indicted Peaslee on one count of conspiracy to commit robbery (I.C. §§ 18-6501, -6502, and -1701) and one count of infliction of great bodily harm during an attempted felony or conspiracy (I.C. § 19-2520B). Peaslee moved to suppress his statements made to officers, arguing he did not validly waive his Miranda[1] rights. The district court conducted a hearing and denied the motion. Peaslee entered a conditional guilty plea to conspiracy to commit robbery and the state dismissed the remaining charge. Peaslee reserved the right to appeal the denial of his motion to suppress. The district court accepted Peaslee's plea and imposed a unified life sentence, with a minimum period of confinement of ten years. Peaslee appeals.

II. ANALYSIS

A. Motion to Suppress

Peaslee argues the district court erred in failing to grant his motion to suppress.[2] The state argues Peaslee was not in custody for purposes of Miranda and that the district court's finding that Peaslee knowingly and voluntarily waived his Miranda rights is supported by substantial and competent evidence. For purposes of this ...


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