Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
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.

Lewis v. State

Court of Appeals of Arkansas, Division I

January 30, 2019

ERIC LEWIS APPELLANT
v.
STATE OF ARKANSAS APPELLEE

          APPEAL FROM THE OUACHITA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 52CR-15-70] HONORABLE ROBIN J. CARROLL, JUDGE.

          Mylissia M. Blankenship, for appellant.

          Leslie Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Karen Virginia Wallace, Ass't Att'y Gen., for appellee.

          ROBERT J. GLADWIN, Judge.

         Appellant Eric Lewis appeals the denial of his motion to suppress by the Ouachita County Circuit Court, arguing that the circuit court violated his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination by admitting statements he made to police because the interrogator made false promises of leniency. We affirm.

         On March 3, 2015, appellant was charged with raping a seven-year-old girl in violation of Arkansas Code Annotated section 5-14-103 (Repl. 2013). On May 14, 2015, appellant filed a motion to suppress statements that he made to Arkansas State Police investigator Jerome Sanders, alleging that during an interrogation by the Camden Police Department, he "was questioned for extended periods of time and put under undue stress to the point that he was not able to knowingly, intelligently, or voluntarily waive his constitutional rights against self-incrimination." Appellant argued that any statements obtained were inadmissible either in the State's case-in-chief or for impeachment, citing the Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and article 2 sections 8 and 10 of the Arkansas Constitution, pursuant to Mincey v. Arizona, 437 U.S. 385 (1978); Grillot v. State, 353 Ark. 294, 107 S.W.3d 136 (2003); and Kennedy v. State, 325 Ark. 3, 923 S.W.2d 274 (1996). Appellant subsequently filed an amended motion to suppress in which he named the Arkansas State Police as having participated in the interrogations along with officers from the Camden Police Department. The State filed its response, again denying the allegations.

         On August 13, 2015, the circuit court held a pretrial hearing regarding the suppression motion. At that hearing, the circuit court noted:

I did go back and listen to everything that [defense counsel] wanted me to listen to, looked at the timing [sic] frame for when you started, from when the interrogation started until it ended, [and] read the case law that was provided by your attorney and [the deputy prosecuting attorney].
What I found was, is that there's just not enough evidence there for me to throw it out and say that it's coercion. If you take the stand at trial, that's the only way that that can be used against you. Well, I shouldn't say that. That's not the case. But it can be used to impeach you at trial. But that's not to say that you still can't make the points that [defense counsel] makes in the brief, that you made in the brief about how the interrogation was conducted.
So, I'm going to deny the motion, but, obviously, you'll still have the opportunity to make those arguments at trial should you want to go to trial.

         An order denying the motion to suppress was filed on August 24, 2015.

         At the July 8, 2016 jury trial a one-hour videotape of appellant's police interview was played for the jury during the direct examination of Investigator Sanders, who had interviewed appellant. Also, written statements made during that interview were introduced into evidence without objection as State's exhibits 5 and 6.[1] Investigator Sanders explained that while the portion of the interview that was played for the jury was approximately an hour long, the interview lasted a little more than three hours.

         Appellant testified, stating that he graduated from the local high school in 2013. He initially stated that, in January, when he was interviewed by Investigator Sanders, he was at the station for four hours and that he did not believe he was free to go. However, appellant stated on cross-examination that he voluntarily went to the police station and that he could have left at any time. During his testimony, counsel noted in a bench conference that appellant went to the station voluntarily and took a polygraph test, which he failed, and that he was there for three hours after the polygraph test.

         On July 8, 2016, the jury returned a guilty verdict, and appellant was sentenced to twenty-five years in the Arkansas Department of Correction (ADC). He filed a timely notice of appeal on August ...


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.