CRIMINAL LAW – Search and seizure, suppression: Taylor v. Commonwealth (COA 2/20/2009)

Taylor v. Commonwealth
2009 WL 414003
Opinion by Judge Wine; Chief Judge Combs and Senior Judge Buckingham concurred. The Court affirmed a judgment convicting appellant of promoting contraband in the first degree pursuant to KRS 520.050.

The Court first held that appellant stated no basis to suppress the marijuana found on his person after he was taken to jail subsequent to his arrest. The police officers’ questions to appellant did not establish that the evidence was obtained in violation of his constitutional rights but rather, went to the issue of whether the evidence was sufficient to support a jury’s finding that he knowingly introduced contraband into a detention facility.

The Court then held that appellant’s suppression motion did not preserve the issue at it related to the sufficiency of the evidence on a motion for directed verdict when appellant only argued in his motion for directed verdict that the Commonwealth failed to prove that marijuana was dangerous contraband. However, the Court held that even had the issue been adequately preserved, the Commonwealth proved both a voluntary act and a culpable mental state by proving that appellant knew that he had contraband on his person and, with that knowledge, took it into the facility. The Court rejected the argument that this interpretation violated appellant’s right against self-incrimination.

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