D.Neb.: Def questioned in his front yard was effectively in custody for Miranda

Defendant questioned in his front yard was effectively in custody and should have been Mirandized. United States v. Leon, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 32964 (D. Neb. Feb. 18, 2020):

Defendant was also alone with the agents. See Griffin, 922 F.2d at 1352 (“A frequently recurring example of police domination concerns the removal of the suspect from the presence of family, friends, or colleagues.”). Further, the agents were following up on a nearly one-year old case in which Defendant had initially been in jail for one day before being released. In so doing, the agents did not tell Defendant that his answers would be used against him, that he could be further punished, that the tribal authorities did not have jurisdiction, that there was further investigation by authorities having jurisdiction, that he did not have to talk, that this was a final step before the filing of a federal charge, or that he was free to leave. And, although Defendant was not arrested at the conclusion of the questioning, the agents proceeded by alternate means, a federal charging document and issuance of summons. In consideration of the totality of the circumstances set forth above, the undersigned magistrate judge finds that Defendant was in custody on July 24, 2019, and that the failure to provide him with Miranda warnings prior to questioning him renders his statements inadmissible.

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