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State v. Andrews

February 15, 2008

STATE OF KANSAS, APPELLEE,
v.
JOSEPH B. ANDREWS, APPELLANT.



Appeal from Johnson District Court; JAMES FRANKLIN DAVIS, judge.

SYLLABUS BY THE COURT

1. When material facts to a trial court's decision on a motion to suppress are not in dispute, the question of whether to suppress is a question of law over which an appellate court has unlimited review.

2. When the central questions in a case concern the interpretation of a statute, appellate review is unlimited.

3. Under the facts of our case, the information received from the recording of an inmate's telephone conversations made from a county jail is not in violation of the provisions of Kansas' wiretapping statutes, K.S.A. 22-2514 et seq.

4. Information from the contents of an electronic communication received by a law enforcement officer may be used as is appropriate to the proper performance of such officer's official duties and in giving testimony in any criminal proceeding as authorized by K.S.A. 22-2515(c) and (d), with reference to 18 U.S.C. § 2511(2)(c) (2000).

5. Under the clear facts of this case, the inmate consented to the monitoring of his telephone calls because of the meaningful notice given by the jail's orientation handbook, numerous notices stating consent was given when a call was made, and warnings given during the telephone calls.

6. The inmate's phone conversations were lawfully utilized to obtain a search warrant and the defendant's motion to suppress were properly denied.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Larson, J.

Affirmed.

Before GREENE, P.J., McANANY, J., and LARSON, S.J.

This is Joseph B. Andrews' direct appeal of the district court order denying his motion to suppress evidence. Andrews contends the Johnson County Sheriff's Department violated Kansas' wiretapping statutes, K.S.A. 22-2514 et seq., when it recorded and subsequently listened to his outgoing telephone calls from the Johnson County Adult Detention Center without first obtaining judicial approval for such actions.

The facts in this case are not in dispute. In March 2005, Andrews was stopped by Leawood police while driving a 1994 Chevrolet truck pulling a Jayco Eagle travel trailer. He was arrested on an outstanding Lenexa city warrant and placed in the Johnson County Adult Detention Center (hereinafter jail). Investigators learned the truck and trailer had been stolen in Missouri, resulting in Andrews being charged with two counts of felony theft in violation of K.S.A. 21-3701.

While he was in jail, Andrews made numerous telephone calls to his girlfriend, Pamela Harless, on the jail's Evercom phone system. These conversations were recorded by the Evercom system; later, members of the Johnson County Sheriff's Department listened to the calls. During the conversations, Andrews told Harless that there were "dope" and "guns" in the trailer.

Utilizing this information, the sheriff's department obtained a search warrant for the trailer where officers discovered marijuana and a Remington 870 H shotgun. Andrews was then charged with criminal possession of a firearm in violation of K.S.A. ...


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