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State v. Quinton

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Fourth Circuit

October 23, 2019

STATE OF LOUISIANA
v.
SAMSON H. QUINTON

          APPEAL FROM CRIMINAL DISTRICT COURT ORLEANS PARISH NO. 542-196, SECTION "B" Honorable Tracey Flemings-Davillier, Judge

          Leon Cannizzaro, Donna Andrieu, Irena Zajickova ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY PARISH OF ORLEANS COUNSEL FOR APPELLANT/ STATE OF LOUISIANA

          Pius A. Obioha PIUS A. OBIOHA & ASSOCIATES, LLC COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLEE

          Court composed of Judge Daniel L. Dysart, Judge Joy Cossich Lobrano, Judge Tiffany G. Chase

          DANIEL L. DYSART JUDGE.

         The State appeals the ruling of the trial court granting the defendant's Motion to Quash. For the reasons that follow, we reverse the ruling of the trial court and remand this matter for further proceedings.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY:

         Detective Rigamer of the New Orleans Police Department received a phone call on June 22, 2018, from the manager of the Shell gas station located at 3101 S. Carrollton Avenue in New Orleans. The manager reported that an employee was stealing money from the cash register. Detective Rigamer told the manager that a police unit would be sent out to make a report. The next day, Detective Rigamer followed-up on the complaint, and found that the report filed did not contain all of the required perpetrator information. The detective phoned the manager and was informed that the employee was at work at that time. Detective Rigamer went to the gas station, and Samson Quinton was thereafter transported to the Second District Police Station where an audio and video recorded interview took place. Quinton admitted to removing money from the cash register on a daily basis; however, he stated that he and the manager had an agreement that he could remove money and pay it back when he got paid.

         Detective Rigamer questioned the manager who told him that from time to time employees could get permission to borrow money, but they would sign a receipt for the money borrowed. Quinton had not asked permission, nor had he signed a receipt. Rather, he was video recorded voiding transactions and putting cash in his pocket on eight occasions. The detective retrieved the video surveillance footage that confirmed the manager's statements. The manager also informed the detective that on one occasion he confronted Quinton, who admitted to taking money and returned it.[1]

         Based on the information obtained from the gas station manager and the surveillance video, a bill of information was filed on July 24, 2018, charging Quinton with theft of U.S. currency valued at $1, 000.00 or more, but less than $5, 000.00, belonging to Shell gas station[2] on June 22, 2018, with the intent to permanently deprive the gas station of the property. The bill was later amended to specify a date range of between June 11, 2018 and June 21, 2018.

         According to the minute entries, on September 26, 2018, the State tendered discovery and filed an inventory. Additionally, the State made a plea offer to Quinton, provided he make restitution to the gas station. That offer was declined.

         At a hearing on October 29, 2018, the defense orally requested an itemized list of the money taken. The hearing was continued on a joint motion. At the next hearing on November 26, 2018, the defense informed the court that it had not been provided with an inventory list of the value of the allegedly stolen money. The trial court granted the State additional time to file an inventory, and on January 16, 2019, the defense filed the subject Motion to Quash, which the State opposed. At a hearing on January 22, 2019, the trial court granted the Motion to Quash.

         This appeal followed.

         D ...


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