United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Florence Division
Bryan Harwell United States District Judge.
matter is before the Court on Defendant Jeremy Lamar
Hayes's “Motion to Dismiss Counts 3, 5, 7, and 9,
” “Motion for Jackson v. Denno Hearing, ”
and “Motion to Suppress General Warrant.”
See ECF Nos. 48, 54, & 56. The Court held a
hearing on November 15, 2018, and took the motions under
is charged in a ten-count indictment with conspiracy to
commit Hobbs Act robbery, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §
1951 (Count One), Hobbs Act robbery, in violation of 18
U.S.C. §§ 1951(a) and 2 (Counts Two, Four, Six, and
Eight), using, carrying, and brandishing a firearm during and
in relation to a crime of violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C.
§ 924(c) (Counts Three, Five, Seven, and Nine), and
possession of a firearm by a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C.
§ 922(g)(1) (Count 10). See ECF No. 2
(indictment). These charges stem from alleged robberies of
several businesses in Horry County, South Carolina during
31, 2018, Defendant filed a “Motion to Dismiss Counts
3, 5, 7, and 9.” See ECF No. 48. On August 18,
2018, Defendant filed a “Motion for Jackson v. Denno
Hearing.” See ECF No. 54. On August 20, 2018,
Defendant filed a “Motion to Suppress General
Warrant.” See ECF No. 56. The Government filed
responses in opposition to the motions. See ECF Nos.
58-60. The Court held an evidentiary hearing on November 15,
2018, heard testimony from four law enforcement officers,
took the motions under advisement, and permitted the parties
to submit supplemental briefing on the issues raised at the
hearing. Thereafter, Defendant filed a response in
support of his Denno motion, see ECF No.
72, and the Government filed a response in support of its
prior responses. See ECF No. 75.
Court will address Defendant's three motions in turn.
Motion for Jackson v. Denno Hearing (Statements to Law
to Jackson v. Denno, 378 U.S. 368 (1964), Defendant
asks the Court to determine the whether his post-arrest
statements to law enforcement were knowing, intelligent, and
voluntary. See ECF No. 54.
the Fifth Amendment, “[n]o person . . . shall be
compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against
himself . . . without due process of law.” U.S. Const.
amend V. A defendant's statement is “involuntary
under the Fifth Amendment only if it is
‘involuntary' within the meaning of the Due Process
Clause.” United States v. Braxton, 112 F.3d
777, 780 (4th Cir. 1997) (en banc) (citing Oregon v.
Elstad, 470 U.S. 298, 304 (1985)). A court must assess a
voluntariness issue by examining the “totality of the
circumstances, ” including the “characteristics
of the defendant, the setting of the interview, and the
details of the interrogation.” United States v.
Pelton, 835 F.2d 1067, 1071 (4th Cir. 1987) (citing
United States v. Wertz, 625 F.2d 1128, 1134 (4th
Cir.1980)). Under the totality of the circumstances, a
statement is involuntary if the accused's will was
“overborne” or his “capacity for
self-determination critically impaired.”
Schneckloth v. Bustamonte, 412 U.S. 218, 225 (1973);
see United States v. Byers, 649 F.3d 197, 215 (4th
Cir. 2011) (“In considering the voluntariness of a
statement under the Due Process Clause, [a court] must
determine whether the confession was extracted by any sort of
threats or violence, or obtained by any direct or implied
promises, however slight, or by the exertion of any improper
influence.” (internal quotation marks and original
brackets omitted)). “In evaluating whether a
defendant's will has been overborne, ” a court
should consider “the youth of the accused, his lack of
education, or his low intelligence, the lack of any advice to
the accused of his constitutional rights, the length of
detention, the repeated and prolonged nature of the
questioning, and the use of physical punishment such as the
deprivation of food or sleep.” United States v. Abu
Ali, 528 F.3d 210, 232 (4th Cir. 2008).
“[C]oercive police activity is a necessary predicate to
the finding that a confession is not ‘voluntary'
within the meaning of the Due Process Clause.”
Colorado v. Connelly, 479 U.S. 157, 167 (1986).
Miranda v. Arizona,  the [Supreme] Court determined
that the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments' prohibition
against compelled self-incrimination required that custodial
interrogation be preceded by advice to the putative defendant
that he has the right to remain silent and also the right to
the presence of an attorney.” Edwards v.
Arizona, 451 U.S. 477, 481-82 (1981). When an
“accused indicates that he wishes to remain silent, the
interrogation must cease. If he requests counsel,
the interrogation must cease until
an attorney is present.” Id. at
482 (internal quotation marks omitted) (emphasis added). An
accused who has invoked his rights to silence and counsel
may, however, validly waive those rights. If an accused
invokes his right to counsel, a court “may admit his
responses to further questioning only on finding that he (a)
initiated further discussions with the police, and (b)
knowingly and intelligently waived the right he had
invoked.” United States v. Cummings, 937 F.2d
941, 946 (4th Cir. 1991) (internal quotation marks omitted).
evidence presented at the hearing showed Defendant made four
statements to law enforcement in January and February 2018:
one on January 31, two on February 1, and one on February 2.
The statements were made in connection with multiple alleged
robberies that law enforcement from Myrtle Beach, Surfside
Beach, and Horry County were investigating, and they occurred
after Defendant's arrest while he was in police custody.
First Statement (January 31)
gave his first statement to Lieutenant Tony Allen of the
Myrtle Beach Police Department (“MBPD”) during an
interview on January 31, 2018. The Government submitted an
audio recording of this interview, which the Court has
reviewed. The interview primarily concerned an alleged
robbery of Royal Cleaners on January 29, 2018, and an alleged
robbery of Pizza Hut on January 30, 2018.
on the totality of the circumstances, the Court finds
Defendant's January 31 statement was voluntary. According
to the credible testimony of Lieutenant Allen, Defendant gave
the statement during the afternoon (3:37 P.M.) in an
interview room located inside the MBPD headquarters.
Defendant, Lieutenant Allen, and another police officer
(Cameron Warren) were present, and the interview lasted
approximately fifty minutes. Defendant's handcuffs were
removed, and there is no indication that he suffered any
physical discomfort during the interview. Defendant is a high
school graduate, was not intoxicated, understood English and
the officers' questions, and was able to answer the
questions. Lieutenant Allen and the other officer did not
bring their firearms into the interview room, and they did
not use any coercive tactics, violence, improper threats, or
promises to elicit Defendant's responses to their
questions. At the beginning of the interview, Defendant was
fully advised of his Miranda rights and signed a
form confirming his understanding of those rights. The Court
has listened to the interview, and Defendant sounds calm,
comfortable, and relaxed. Significantly, at 47:29 on the
recording, Defendant states, “I'd like to have a
lawyer present, ” and Lieutenant Allen immediately
ceases further questioning and tells Defendant he will not
talk to him again unless Defendant asks to speak to him.
Given the totality of these circumstances, the Court
concludes Defendant's January 31, 2018 statement was
knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily made.
Second & Third Statements (February 1)
made two statements to law enforcement on February 1, 2018:
(1) a statement to Corporal Wilson James of the Surfside
Beach Police Department relating to an alleged robbery of
Peggy's Antique Store on January 28, 2018, and (2) a
statement to Detective Cory Dulina of the Horry County Police
Department relating to an alleged robbery of Domino's
Pizza (and alleged robberies of Walmart and Lowe's Home
Improvement, which are not at issue in this case). The
Government submitted audio and video recordings of both
indicated above, Defendant invoked his right to counsel
during his January 31 interview with Lieutenant Allen, who
then immediately stopped interviewing Defendant. Both
Corporal James and Detective Dulina testified they knew
Defendant had asked for an attorney (i.e., exercised his
right to counsel) before interviewing him. Additionally, both