United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO
SUPPRESS PHYSICAL EVIDENCE AND FOR A FRANKS HEARING [DOCS 439
CARAM STEEH UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the court on defendant Eugene Fisher's
renewed motion for a Franks hearing and to suppress
physical evidence seized as a result of the execution of a
search warrant at 18803 Lamont, Detroit, Michigan on November
12, 2015. The court held oral argument on the motion on April
30, 2018. For the reasons stated on the record and further in
this order, defendant's motion for a Franks
hearing and to suppress evidence is DENIED.
November 3, 2015, FBI Violent Gang Task Force
(“VGTF”) Special Agent Vincente Ruiz (“S.A.
Ruiz”) submitted a search warrant application and
affidavit in support to search the premises located at 18803
Lamont, Detroit, Michigan. Magistrate Judge Stafford issued a
search warrant based on the application and affidavit. During
the search of the property, which was the residence of
defendant Eugene Fisher, VGTF agents seized one Ruger
semiautomatic .45 caliber handgun, assorted ammunition and
other items which the government intends to introduce at
trial. Defendant moves to suppress the evidence seized,
arguing that the seizure violates his Fourth Amendment rights
because the affidavit failed to establish probable cause that
evidence of a crime would be found at the premises.
following facts are taken from the affidavit submitted with
the application for search warrant submitted to Magistrate
Judge Stafford. Law enforcement became aware of a party to be
held in memory of Devon McClure, aka “Block”, a
deceased Seven Mile Blood (“SMB”) gang member, at
the Crazy House Adult Entertainment on September 25, 2015.
(Aff. ¶18). The party, known as “Block Day”,
was announced on social media. Agents reviewed social media
accounts of Seven Mile Bloods members, who were communicating
through social media to coordinate their arrival at the
September 25, 2015, members of the VGTF conducted
surveillance in the area of the Crazy Horse. Steve Arthur Jr.
and Billy Arnold, among other Seven Mile Bloods members, were
seen arriving at the club. Arthur and Arnold departed the
Crazy Horse in a blue 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer with Ohio
license plate GJH1851, which had previously been reported
stolen. Detroit Police Department officers attempted a
traffic stop and pursuit ensued. When the car was stopped,
Arthur attempted to flee on foot but was quickly apprehended.
Arnold was arrested inside the vehicle. The officers
recovered a Bushmaster .223 caliber rifle, with a fully
loaded 40 round magazine from the rear compartment of the
Trailblazer. Five cell phones were recovered inside the
vehicle and another one was located on Arnold's person.
affiant, S.A. Ruiz, explained that through his experience and
training involving violent gangs he has “learned that
gang members who use their own firearms in gang war
situations retain access to those firearms for protection
from retaliation and/or frequently pass those firearms to
fellow gang members for safekeeping, in order to prevent the
weapons from being seized by law enforcement officers
pursuant to a search of their residences, vehicles, or
confidential human source (“CHS”) provided
information to the affiant on October 14, 2015, that Arthur
and Arnold picked up the Bushmaster .223 caliber rifle from
Eugene Fisher's house, prior to arriving at the Crazy
Horse. The CHS, who is now known to be co-defendant Steven
Arthur, informed the affiant that in addition to the
Bushmaster rifle he saw two other pistols with extended
magazines at this location. The CHS told the affiant that it
is common practice within the Seven Mile Bloods to have
firearms available to multiple members at a stash house.
According to the affiant, the CHS provided information about
a previous shooting involving the Seven Mile Bloods that
proved to be reliable. (Aff. ¶22).
affiant corroborates 18803 Lamont as Fisher's address by
citing a Detroit Police Department report from September 8,
2015 in which Fisher reported his electrical meter stolen
from 18803 Lamont. In that report, Fisher provided his phone
number as 313-728-0167.
corroborate the fact that Arnold and Arthur picked up the
.223 Bushmaster rifle prior to going to the Crazy Horse, the
affidavit quotes three text messages from September 25, 2015
between Arnold's phone, taken during his arrest (and
accessed pursuant to a search warrant), and Fisher's
- 10:22 PM from Arnold to 313-728-0167: “I'm coming
to grab something be close”
- 10:26 PM from 313-728-0167 to Arnold: “At
- 10:27 PM from Arnold to 313-728-0167: “I need to get
in yo crib and grab my hook ups”.
affiant states that these text messages are consistent with
the CHS's information about Arnold and Arthur picking up
the Bushmaster .223 caliber rifle at Fisher's house prior
to arriving at the Crazy Horse, and with the fact of
Arnold's arrest that night while in possession of the
same firearm. In this context, the affiant believes the text
message conversation to be a discussion of Arnold making
arrangements to pick up the Bushmaster .223 caliber rifle
from Fisher's house.
call was made by Arnold to 313-728-0167, Fisher's phone
number, on October 1, 2015. The unidentified male from
313-728-0167 asks Arnold if anyone is talking about
“that night.” He further asks, “He
ain't say anything about where y'all went before
y'all got to the club did he?” The affiant suggests
there is a logical inference, in context with other
information, that ...