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United States v. Cook

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

December 24, 2015

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff-Appellee,
v.
OSHAN COOK, Defendant-Appellant

Argued and Submitted, San Francisco, California January 13, 2015

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. D.C. No. 3:10-cr-00376-JSW-3. Jeffrey S. White, District Judge, Presiding.

SUMMARY[**]

Criminal Law

Affirming convictions for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute MDMA and possession with intent to distribute MDMA and LSD, the panel held that a search of the defendant's backpack did not violate his Fourth Amendment rights.

The panel held that the district court did not err in denying the defendant's motion to suppress evidence seized from his backpack because the brief, cursory search of the backpack for weapons was incident to a lawful arrest. In addition, the district court did not abuse its discretion in failing to hold an evidentiary hearing on the motion to suppress.

The panel also held that any Confrontation Clause violation in allowing law enforcement agents to testify about an identification of the defendant as the drug supplier was harmless.

David J. Pullman, San Rafael, California, for Defendant-Appellant.

Owen P. Martikan (argued), Assistant United States Attorney; Melinda Haag, United States Attorney; Barbara J. Valliere, Chief, Appellate Division, United States Attorney's Office, San Francisco, California, for Plaintiff-Appellee.

Before: Richard R. Clifton and Jacqueline H. Nguyen, Circuit Judges and Jed S. Rakoff,[*] Senior District Judge. Opinion by Judge Nguyen.

Page 1196

AMENDED OPINION

NGUYEN, Circuit Judge:

Oshan Cook appeals his convictions for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute MDMA (also known as ecstasy or Molly) and possession with intent to distribute MDMA and LSD. Cook mainly challenges the denial of his motions to suppress the evidence seized from his backpack, arguing that the search violated his Fourth Amendment rights. We conclude,

Page 1197

however, that the brief, cursory search of Cook's backpack for weapons was valid incident to a lawful arrest, and thus the district court properly denied Cook's motions. Because we also reject Cook's remaining challenges, we affirm.

I

A


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