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United States v. Jackson

United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division

March 20, 2017

UNITED STATES of AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
D-1, RICHARD JACKSON, Defendant.

          OPINION AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO SUPPRESS [17]

          STEPHEN J. MURPHY, III United States District Judge

         The Government charged Defendant Jackson with two counts of sex trafficking in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1591(a). He has moved to suppress evidence seized during a November 17, 2016 search of his home and his LG cell phone. For the reasons stated below, the Court will deny the motion.

         BACKGROUND

         On November 16, 2016, police received the first of a series of 911 calls from an adult woman residing at 3004 S. Electric, Detroit, Michigan. The woman complained that Jackson physically assaulted another woman in the residence. Police responded. After the police arrived at 3004 S. Electric, the woman who called 911 told them that a woman had been assaulted by Jackson and was still in the house. Police entered the residence to search for the alleged victim. Body cameras captured the police officers' actions inside the residence. The videos show officers looking through dresser drawers and looking under furniture. Later, officers obtained a warrant from a Wayne County judge to search 3004 S. Electric. ECF 19-2 The search-warrant affidavit made the following factual allegations:

• The affiant, a Canton police officer, had served for six years on the FBI's Southeast Michigan Trafficking and Exploitation Crimes Task Force (SEMTEC). Id. ¶ 1.
• On November 17, 2016, Adult Victim (AV) - 1 called 911 to report that she and three other females (including a 14 and 16 year old) lived at 3004 S. Electric, Detroit, Michigan and had been forced to work as prostitutes by Jackson. AV-1 alleged Jackson was their pimp. Id. ¶ 3.
• When officers responded to 3004 S. Electric, the minor girls were not present. AV-1 told officers that Jackson had physically assaulted the girls, and she had helped them to escape through a bathroom window. Id. ¶ 5.
• AV-1 told officers that Jackson gave the females drugs and beat them if they refused to work as prostitutes. Id. ¶ 6.

ECF 19-2, PgID 76-77.

         The officers also obtained a warrant to search Jackson's cell phone. ECF 19-3. The cell-phone affidavit reiterated the factual allegations above and added the following statements:

• AV-1 told officers that Jackson used a LG cell phone to take photos of the females, post the photos on "Backpage, " and set up "dates" for the females. Id. ¶ 7.
• The affiant noted that based on his experience investigating sex trafficking, "Backpage" is a webpage used to advertise prostitution services, and the term "date" refers to a prostitute meeting with a "john" to engage in sexual activities for money. Id.

ECF 19-3, PgID 82-83. Based on the authority of the two warrants, officers searched Jackson's residence and his cell phone. Id. at 81. The officers arrested Jackson and the Government charged him with two counts of sex trafficking. Jackson now seeks to suppress evidence from the searches.

         LEGAL ...


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