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Commonwealth v. Quint Q., a juvenile (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-135-13)

NOTICE: All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030; SJCReporter@sjc.state.ma.us       12‑P‑1154                                  Appeals Court   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  QUINT Q., a juvenile.     No. 12‑P‑1154.   Suffolk.     May 8, 2013.  ‑  November 12, 2013. Present:  Cypher, Vuono, & Meade, JJ.   Constitutional Law, Admissions and confessions, Parent and child, Voluntariness of statement, Waiver of constitutional right by juvenile.  Practice, Criminal, Motion to suppress, Waiver, Voluntariness of statement.  Waiver.  Words, “Interested adult.”     Complaint received and sworn to in the Suffolk County Division of the Juvenile Court Department on March 29, 2011.   A pretrial motion to suppress evidence was heard by Peter M. Coyne, J.   An application for leave to prosecute an interlocutory appeal was allowed by Robert J. Cordy, J., in the Supreme Judicial Court for the county of Suffolk; and the appeal was reported by him to the Appeals Court.   Sarah H. Montgomery, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth. Michael A. Contant for the juvenile.       CYPHER, J.  A complaint issued in the Suffolk County Division of the Juvenile Court Department charging the juvenile with breaking and entering in the daytime with the intent to commit a felony therein, G. L. c. 266, § 18.  The juvenile filed a motion to suppress statements he made at the police station during an interrogation.  During the interrogation, the juvenile, age fifteen years and eight months at that time, made oral admissions that earlier that day, he had taken a tool from his high school and, in the company of two friends, used it to pry open the door to a house located at 35 Darling Street in the Mission Hill area of Boston, which the three then entered.  Later in the fifty-minute interview, the juvenile admitted to breaking into five other homes on earlier dates.  The statement was electronically recorded with his consent, and that audio recording was admitted in evidence at the suppression hearing. In the juvenile’s motion papers, he argued that he was not afforded an opportunity to consult with an interested adult, i.e., his mother, and that the police use of an interrogation technique known as “minimization,” combined with implied promises of leniency, rendered his statement involuntary.  After a review of the exhibits and an evidentiary hearing, a judge allowed the motion, concluding that the juvenile’s statement was not voluntary because he had been coerced by the “domineering” conduct of his mother throughout the interview, […]

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Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - November 12, 2013 at 6:40 pm

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