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UNITED STATES v. DORAN

July 30, 1985

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA against JOSEPH PETER DORAN, Defendant


The opinion of the court was delivered by: MCLAUGHLIN

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

McLAUGHLIN, District Judge

 Defendant is charged with two counts of robbery of a Post Office in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2114. He has moved to suppress (a) an out-of-court identification made in the course of a lineup and photographic display, and (b) his pre-arrest statements. For the reasons set forth below, the motion to suppress the identification is denied and the motion to suppress the statements is granted.

 Facts

 In the summer and fall of 1984 two Post Offices in Queens were robbed. On November 5, 1984, postal inspectors showed a photographic spread containing photographs of six white males, including defendant Doran, to two postal clerks who had been robbed (Tr. 4-6). One of the clerks, Mr. Mulligan, indicated that Doran "looked like" the man who had robbed him on October 2, 1984 (Tr. 8, 19). The second clerk, Mr. Grammatico, who had been robbed on August 31, 1984, was unable to identify any of the men in the photographic array (Tr. 13).

 On November 20, 1984, defendant Doran, who by then was in state custody on unrelated charges, was brought into this District to be placed in a lineup (Tr. 40, 51). When he was placed in the postal inspector's car, Doran was read his Miranda warnings by Postal Inspector Nater (Tr. 41).

 Doran was then transported to the General Post Office in Manhattan (Tr. 43). Upon arrival at the Post Office, Doran was again advised of his rights, and was asked to sign a standard "waiver of rights" form (Tr. 46).

 Doran expressed some concern about signing the waiver form and wondered aloud whether he would wait for an attorney (Tr. 46-47, 59). Inspector Nater testified that Doran "didn't quite understand if he was required to sign [the form] because he felt that an attorney should be present." (Tr. 46).

 After a bit of soul-searching, Doran concluded: "I didn't do anything and besides I am not intending to answer any questions anyway . . ., don't bother with the attorney right now." Accordingly, he signed the waiver of rights form containing a provision indicating he was willing to speak. (Tr. 65-68).

 Thereafter, Inspector Nater asked Doran several questions about personal history, and he learned, among other things, that Doran was a drug addict (Tr. 68-69). After the personal history was completed, Nater and Doran informally discussed such subjects as the effect of Doran's potential cooperation with the authorities, and the maximum penalty he faced (Tr. 71-72). During this conversation, Inspector Nater told Doran that the agents had a "reasonable belief" that he was involved in the postal robberies. Nater testified that Doran appeared very nervous during the interview and was "shaking quite a bit" (Tr. 62).

 At the conclusion of this informal "discussion," a lineup was conducted, consisting of seven white males, including Doran, all wearing blue sweatshirts with hoods (Tr. 92). Postal Clerk Mulligan, who had previously picked Doran out of the photographic array, again identified Doran at the lineup. Postal Clerk Grammatico, who had been unable to identify anyone in the photographic array, identified an individual other than Doran at the lineup (Tr. 95, 110).

 Following the lineup, Doran was informed that he had been identified (Tr. 78). Accordingly, Doran and Inspector Nater renewed their conversation regarding cooperation, during which Doran again stated that he "really should have an attorney present" (Tr. 49, 79). Inspector Nater testified that he summoned Inspector Washington because it was unclear whether Doran wanted an attorney (Tr. 49).

 Inspector Washington, who had known for a couple of weeks that Doran was a drug addict, began to talk to Doran about cooperation (Tr. 50, 108). In the course of this discussion, Doran asked, "if I cooperate, would I need an attorney?" Inspector Washington then asked, "Do you want one?" Doran replied, "No." (Tr. 108).

 Thereafter, Doran confessed to both robberies (Tr. 83, 108). He was subsequently transported back to the United States Marshals, who returned him to state custody. On March 6, 1985, he was ...


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