Fellers v. United States

540 U.S. 519 (2004)


A grand jury indicted Fellers (D) for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. Officers knocked on D's door and, D invited the officers into his living room. The officers advised D they had come to discuss his involvement in methamphetamine distribution. D was informed that they had a federal warrant for his arrest and that a grand jury had indicted him for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. The officers told D that the indictment referred to his involvement with certain individuals, four of whom they named. D then told the officers that he knew the four people and had used methamphetamine during his association with them. This occurred in the space of 15 minutes, and eventually, they transported D to jail. At jail, D was advised of his rights under Miranda. D signed a Miranda waiver form, and D then reiterated the inculpatory statements he had made earlier, admitted to having associated with other individuals implicated in the charged conspiracy and admitted to having loaned money to one of them even though he suspected that she was involved in drug transactions. D moved to suppress the inculpatory statements he made at his home and the county jail. The District Court suppressed the 'unwarned' statements D made at his house but admitted D's jailhouse statements concluding D had knowingly and voluntarily waived his Miranda rights before making the statements. D was convicted of conspiring to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine. D appealed, arguing that his jailhouse statements should have been suppressed as fruits of the statements obtained at his home in violation of the Sixth Amendment. The Court of Appeals affirmed: Patterson is not applicable here ... for the officers did not interrogate D at his home.' The Court of Appeals also concluded that the statements from the jail were properly admitted under the rule of Elstad, 'Though Miranda requires that the unwarned admission must be suppressed, the admissibility of any subsequent statement should turn in these circumstances solely on whether it is knowingly and voluntarily made.'