Searching over 5,500,000 cases.

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Blakey

United States District Court, E.D. Virginia, Richmond Division

March 14, 2018




         This matter is before the Court on DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO SUPPRESS STATEMENTS (ECF No. 12) . For the following reasons, the motion will be granted.


         This case involves the prosecution of Defendant Jerrell Blakey for possession of heroin and cocaine hydrochloride with intent to distribute, in violation of 21 U.S.C. §§ 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(C). Indictment 1-2. Blakey argues that certain incriminating statements he made to law enforcement should be excluded because he was not advised of his rights as required by Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966). Def.'s Br. 1.


         To meet its burden, the Government put on the testimony of Officer Thomas Kline, a member of the Chester County Police Department assigned to a DEA task force, and it introduced a video[1] and audio recording of the encounter between Blakey and the police officers. The defense also called a witness. The findings of fact are based on that record.

         On October 27, 2017, Kline received a tip about an individual dealing heroin and cocaine. The tip identified the individual as Blakey and provided his address, among other information. After running a criminal history check, Kline found that Blakey had several narcotics convictions and was on probation.

         Kline and another task force officer then drove to the address provided, which was a boarding house in which Blakey and his girlfriend, Natasha Robinson, occupied a room. Robinson permitted the officers to enter and search the room that she and Blakey shared (to which Robinson had complete access). The search revealed sandwich bags, brownish-tan powder packaged in small bags, white powder packaged in small bags, a scale, and various paper documents in drawers belonging to Blakey. Kline collected the evidence, gave Robinson his phone number, and asked her to have Blakey call him once he returned from work.

         Kline later received a call from a phone number he did not recognize. When he returned the call, Blakey identified himself. Kline asked if Blakey would like to speak with him. Blakey agreed, and Kline stated that he would come by the residence and would call when he was close.

         Kline returned to Blakey's boarding house with Officer Timothy Walker. Kline called Blakey, said that he was parked downstairs, identified his vehicle (a black, unmarked Ford Edge), and asked Blakey to come down. Kline was in the driver's seat and Walker was in the back seat, both in plain clothes. Blakey entered the car, and Kline recorded the conversation on his cell phone.

         The conversation began with Kline telling Blakey that: "we gonna drive off .... So we'll just go down the street here real quick so we can talk a little bit aways away." Def.'s Ex. 1, 1. Kline testified that they drove away "in case somebody did walk by that knew Mr. Blakey, " especially given that narcotics are dealt in the area. Feb. 28, 2018 Hr'g Tr. 14. The officers drove for a short distance and stopped, and a conversation with Blakey ensued.

         The officers began the conversation cordially, and they asked if Blakey had any weapons. Walker inquired if Blakey worked for the City of Richmond, and Blakey responded, "I just got on with the City like 30 days ago, so I'm on like a year probation." Def.'s Ex. 1, 1. Kline then told Blakey that the officers "got some information that you were doing a little bit of dealing" and that: "Obviously, you know what we got out of your place. It was in the drawer." Def.'s Ex. 1, 2. And, he warned:

All I'm going to ask you at this rate - at this point is you be straight with me. As long as you're straight with me, then we can drive back around and drop you right back off. What I don't want is any - any bulls**t, or anything like that, because if you do that, like I said, you're - you're here on your own to talk to me.

Def.'s Ex. 1, 2. After giving this admonition, Kline noted that "I ain't forcing you to do nothing." Def.'s Ex. 1, 2.

         Kline then repeated, however, that: "we got some dope and we got some powder in your room. It was in your drawer. Obviously, you know where it is with the baggies and the scale, all that kind of stuff. So that's where we're at right now, okay?" Def.'s Ex. 1, 2. He also said: "So I got your history. So I know how many times you've been convicted. . . . You know what you're looking at, right? .... What do you think - what do you think you're looking at?" Def.'s Ex. 1, 3.

         In response, Blakey made several incriminating statements. For example, he revealed: "I ain't going to sit here and say I don't do a little something, but I don't - I don't - it's not like that. . . . What it was is I f**king caught a -- I f**king caught an opium habit." Def.'s Ex. 1, 3. He explained, however, that: "I'm trying to get straight. So once I get straight, man, this s**t, I'm done with this s**t." Def.'s Ex. 1, 4.

         Kline then asked, "[w]hat you're telling me is the stuff we found is personal use and you don't deal, is that - is that your story?" Def.'s Ex. 1, 4. Blakey responded: "Yeah, some of it is. It's - it'shalf and half." Def.'s Ex. 1, 4-5. Kline also raised several additional questions as to Blakey's dealing. After Blakey answered, Kline said: "With that being said, cool. I appreciate you being straight with me because if you're coming in here and just you're going to be like I don't know nothing about nothing, then I couldn't do nothing for you." Def.'s Ex. 1, 5. Kline then asked several specific questions about the drugs found in Blakey's room, and Blakey shared the requested information. One of the questions involved who Blakey's source was, and Blakey told Kline that he got the drugs from "some Mexican dudes." Def.'s Ex. 1, 7.

         Kline inquired of Blakey if he had his phone with him, and Blakey said that he had no phone. Kline then exclaimed: "Yo, look at me. You've been straight so far. Don't lie about your phone number. That ain't the way to go, bro. . . . [I]f you were going to lie, you should have lied already. Lying and saying I ain't got a phone don't f**king work. That don't work." Def.'s Ex. 1, 7. In response, Blakey provided his phone number.

         The officers proceeded to raise detailed questions about Blakey's source, such as the source's name, what Blakey bought, what Blakey paid, how frequently he purchased drugs, how long Blakey had been dealing with the source, and where they met. ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.