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United States v. Pulliam

United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit

April 8, 2014

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff - Appellee,
v.
KEITH SCOTT PULLIAM, a/k/a Keith Scott Drew, Defendant - Appellant

Page 968

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 969

Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Colorado. (D.C. No. 1:11-CR-00378-CMA-1).[*]

Submitted on the briefs:

Boston H. Stanton, Jr., Attorney at Law, Denver, Colorado, for Defendant - Appellant.

John F. Walsh, United States Attorney, James C. Murphy and Kurt J. Bohn, Assistant U.S. Attorneys, Denver, Colorado, for Plaintiff - Appellee.

Before BRISCOE Chief Judge, O'BRIEN, and PHILLIPS, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 970

O'BRIEN, Circuit Judge.

Keith Scott Pulliam was indicted on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm and being an armed career criminal. He moved to suppress the fruits--several firearms--of a search of his home. Pertinent to this appeal, he claimed the application for the search warrant, issued by a state court judge, did not demonstrate probable cause and the search by state officers was unreasonably executed. After the district judge denied his suppression motion he pled guilty under a plea agreement, which reserved his right to appeal from the denial. The judge accepted the plea and sentenced Pulliam to imprisonment for 75 months. Exercising his reserved right, Pulliam now brings this appeal. We affirm.

BACKGROUND

Colorado police officers executed the search warrant issued by a Colorado state court judge. After the search was complete, they left the warrant itself and an inventory of the property taken. The inventory was hand written on the back of the warrant. The officers did not leave the attachments to the warrant: the affidavit submitted to obtain the warrant (Attachment A) or the list of items to be seized. (Attachment B).[1]

DISCUSSION

Pulliam contends the evidence from the search should be suppressed because (1) the search warrant was issued without a showing of probable cause; (2) the warrant lacked the particularity required by the Fourth Amendment; and (3) police failed to give him a complete copy of the search warrant as required under Fed. R. Crim. P. 41(f) and the terms of the warrant.

" [T]he ultimate determination of reasonableness under the Fourth Amendment is a question of law," an issue we review de novo. United States v. Basham, 268 F.3d 1199, 1203 (10th Cir. 2001). However, as part of our de novo review, we " accept[] the district court's factual findings unless they are clearly erroneous" and " view[] the evidence in the light most favorable to the government." Id. " A finding of fact is 'clearly erroneous' if it is without factual support in the record or if the appellate court, after reviewing all the evidence, is left with a definite and firm conviction that a mistake has been made." Manning v. United States, 146 F.3d 808, 812 ...


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