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State v. Manning

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Second Circuit

August 9, 2017

STATE OF LOUISIANA Appellee
v.
DAVID JEROME MANNING Appellant

         Appealed from the Twenty-Sixth Judicial District Court for the Parish of Bossier, Louisiana Trial Court No. 202684 Honorable Jeff Cox, Judge

          LOUISIANA APPELLATE PROJECT By: Peggy J. Sullivan Counsel for Appellant.

          J. SCHUYLER MARVIN District Attorney Counsel for Appellee.

          JOHN MICHAEL LAWRENCE Assistant District Attorney.

          Before DREW, STONE, and BLEICH (Pro Tempore), JJ.

          BLEICH, J. (PRO TEMPORE).

         This is the second appeal in a matter arising from the 26th Judicial District Court, Bossier Parish, Louisiana. The defendant, David Jerome Manning, pled guilty to possession of methamphetamine, while reserving his right to appeal the trial court's denial of his motion to suppress. In State v. Manning, 50, 591 (La.App. 2 Cir. 05/18/16), 196 So.3d 626 ("Manning I"), the trial court's ruling was affirmed. However, because the trial court did not rule on Manning's second motion to suppress, the matter was remanded to the trial court for a determination of whether Manning's plea was conditioned upon waiver of the second motion. Manning maintains his guilty plea, but appeals the trial court's denial of his second motion to suppress. For the following reasons, we affirm the trial court's ruling.

         FACTS

         The precise facts of this matter are set forth in Manning I. In summary, Manning was stopped after Louisiana State Trooper Nathan Sharbono observed the vehicle Manning was operating cross the white fog line on I-20 in Bossier Parish. Manning had no driver's license to present to Trp. Sharbono, nor registration paperwork for the vehicle which Manning claimed his sister rented. A criminal records check revealed that Manning and one of his two adult passengers had extensive criminal records. Trooper Sharbono called for the canine unit, which arrived shortly after the call. Manning declined to consent to a search of the vehicle, and the canine unit conducted a free air sniff around the vehicle. The dog alerted on the vehicle, and a subsequent search yielded a plastic bag from under the front passenger seat containing approximately 100 different colored ecstasy pills.

         Manning was charged by bill of information with: possession of a Schedule I controlled dangerous substance ("CDS") (methylone), a violation of La. R.S. 40:966(C)(3); possession of a Schedule II CDS (methamphetamine), a violation of La. R.S. 40:967(C); and, conspiracy to distribute a CDS, a violation of La. R.S. 40:979 and La. R.S. 14:26. He was also charged with improper lane usage and driving under a suspended license.

         Manning filed a motion to suppress, challenging the legality of the vehicle stop and subsequent search. After a hearing, based on the totality of the circumstances and the testimony presented, the trial court denied the initial motion to suppress. Thereafter, Manning filed a second motion to suppress, challenging the legality of the search under Rodriguez v. United States, ___ U.S. ___, 135 S.Ct. 1609, 191 L.Ed.2d 492 (2015).

         At a hearing on July 8, 2015, after some argument as to whether Manning was entitled to a hearing on his second motion to suppress, Manning accepted a plea offer, but no ruling was made on the second motion. Manning pled guilty to possession of methamphetamine, a violation of La. R.S. 40:967(C), reserved his right to appeal the denial of his motion to suppress, and the remaining charges were dismissed. He was sentenced, pursuant to the plea agreement, to five years imprisonment at hard labor.

         In Manning I, Manning argued that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress because Tpr. Sharbono's suspicions of other criminal activity were unfounded. However, Manning did not distinguish between the two separate motions to suppress. In affirming the trial court's denial of the initial motion, this Court stated:

In stopping Manning for the traffic violation, Trp. Sharbono had a right to conduct a routine license and registration check and to engage in conversation with Manning and his passengers. In the trial ...

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