Opinion No. 14
from the District Court of the First Judicial District, State
of Idaho, Kootenai County. Hon. Fred M. Gibler, District
denying motion to suppress, reversed; judgment of conviction,
D. Fredericksen, State Appellate Public Defender; Maya P.
Waldron, Deputy Appellate Public Defender, Boise, for
Lawrence G. Wasden, Attorney General; Jessica M. Lorello,
Deputy Attorney General, Boise, for respondent.
Wayne Powell appeals from his judgment of conviction for lewd
conduct with a minor under sixteen. Specifically, he argues
the district court erred in denying Powell's motion to
suppress evidence obtained during his parole hearing. For the
reasons set forth below, we reverse the district court's
order denying Powell's motion to suppress and vacate his
judgment of conviction.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
2007, Powell was charged with two counts of lewd conduct with
a minor under sixteen, Idaho Code § 18-1508. Each charge
was based upon Powell's conduct with two different
victims. As part of a plea agreement, Powell pled guilty to
one count and the State dismissed the other count. Powell was
sentenced to a unified sixteen-year sentence, with seven
2013, Powell was nearing completion of the determinate
portion of his sentence and was being considered for parole.
As part of the parole process, Powell participated in a
prehearing interview with a parole hearing officer. During
this interview, the hearing officer asked Powell numerous
questions regarding his social and criminal history. Included
in this line of questioning were inquiries into whether
Powell previously committed any other uncharged sexual
offenses. At no time did the hearing officer promise that
Powell would not be prosecuted for any incriminating
responses. The hearing officer did, however, instruct Powell
that if he did not answer the questions truthfully, he would
be denied parole. Powell admitted to the hearing officer to
having engaged in lewd conduct with two additional
victims--conduct for which he had not been
convicted. The hearing officer then
reported the additional victims to local law enforcement.
then appeared before the Idaho Commission of Pardons and
Parole Board for a parole hearing. During that hearing,
Powell again admitted to having engaged in lewd conduct with
two additional victims. The parole board granted Powell a
tentative parole date conditioned upon his successful
completion of several classes.
months after Powell's parole hearing, law enforcement
officers interviewed Powell about his incriminating
admission. Officers read Powell Miranda warnings prior to questioning, and Powell
again admitted to sexually molesting two additional victims.
Based upon the statements made to the parole hearing officer,
the parole board and the law enforcement officers, the State
charged Powell with two additional counts of lewd conduct
with a minor under sixteen. Powell filed a motion to suppress
evidence of the statements he made during the prehearing
interview and parole board hearing on the grounds they were
obtained in violation of his Fifth Amendment right against
self-incrimination. The district court denied the motion,
finding the State did not compel Powell to make the
self-incriminating statements. Instead, the court found that
Powell voluntarily disclosed the information out of his
desire to be paroled.
entered a conditional guilty plea to one count of lewd
conduct with a minor, reserving the right to appeal the
denial of his motion to suppress. In exchange, the State
dismissed the second count of lewd conduct. Powell timely
appeals the district court's denial of his motion to