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State v. Carr

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Second Circuit

September 26, 2018

STATE OF LOUISIANA Appellee
v.
LLOYD CARR Appellant

          Appealed from the First Judicial District Court for the Parish of Caddo, Louisiana Trial Court No. 347383 Honorable Erin Leigh Waddell Garrett, Judge

          LOUISIANA APPELLATE PROJECT By: Douglas L. Harville Counsel for Appellant

          LLOYD CARR Pro Se

          JAMES E. STEWART, SR. Counsel for Appellee District Attorney

          TOMMY J. JOHNSON JANET L. SILVIE KODIE K. SMITH Assistant District Attorneys

          Before WILLIAMS, PITMAN, and STONE, JJ.

          WILLIAMS, J.

         The defendant, Lloyd Carr, was charged by bill of information with possession of a schedule II controlled dangerous substance, cocaine, a violation of La. R.S. 40:967. Following a jury trial, the defendant was found guilty as charged. The trial court adjudicated defendant a fourth felony offender and imposed a sentence of 20 years at hard labor to be served without the benefit of probation, parole or suspension of sentence. For the following reasons, the defendant's conviction and habitual offender adjudication are affirmed; the sentence is amended and affirmed as amended.

         FACTS

         The record shows that on February 24, 2017, Corporal Jessica Benevage of the Caddo Parish Sheriff's Office was on patrol when she noticed a car traveling in the middle of the roadway on Dr. Martin Luther King Drive in Shreveport, Louisiana. Corporal Benevage activated her overhead lights to initiate a stop of the vehicle for improper lane usage. After making two turns, the car stopped on Gordonia Drive. Corporal Benevage approached the passenger side of the car and the defendant, who was the driver of the vehicle, admitted to driving in the center of the road, but stated that he did so to avoid potholes. Corporal Benevage asked the defendant to step out of the car and stand near the rear of the vehicle while she spoke with the passenger.

         While waiting, defendant kept putting his hands into his pants pockets, even after Corporal Benevage asked him to keep his hands out of his pockets. When Corporal Benevage approached the defendant and asked for his driver's license, he admitted that his license was suspended. Corporal Benevage asked the defendant if he had anything illegal on his person, which he denied. Corporal Benevage then told the defendant that she was going to do a "pat search." However, after patting the defendant's jacket pocket, Corporal Benevage reached inside that pocket and then asked the defendant for consent to search his pockets. The defendant consented. Corporal Benevage then searched the defendant's pants pockets and discovered a small amount of crack cocaine. Defendant admitted the cocaine belonged to him after being advised of his rights under Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 86 S.Ct. 1602, 16 L.Ed.2d 694 (1966).

         Defendant was charged with possession of cocaine. A jury found defendant guilty as charged. The trial court adjudicated defendant a fourth-felony offender and sentenced him to serve 20 years at hard labor without the benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence. Defendant's motion to reconsider sentence was denied and this appeal followed.

         DISCUSSION

         The defendant argues that this Court should suppress the crack cocaine found in his pants pocket, as well as his incriminating statements and the crack pipe located in the vehicle, because the officer did not obtain his consent to search his pockets until after she had already commenced the search by putting her hand into his jacket pocket. The defendant asserts that the search of his ...


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