Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Commonwealth v. Monteiro

Appeals Court of Massachusetts, Bristol

June 28, 2018

COMMONWEALTH
v.
PAULO MONTEIRO

          Heard: January 12, 2018.

         Indictment found and returned in the Superior Court Department on January 14, 2016. A pretrial motion to suppress evidence was heard by Raffi N. Yessayan, J.

         An application for leave to prosecute an interlocutory appeal was allowed by Margot Botsford, J., in the Supreme Judicial Court for the county of Suffolk, and the appeal was reported by her to the Appeals Court.

          Robert P. Kidd, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.

          David R. Rangaviz, Committee for Public Counsel Services, for the defendant.

          Present: Vuono, Agnes, & McDonough, JJ.

          AGNES, J.

         In this interlocutory appeal by the Commonwealth, we must decide whether the information provided by a first-time, confidential police informant (CI) was sufficiently corroborated by a single, imperfectly executed controlled "buy" of cocaine for the purposes of establishing probable cause for the issuance of a warrant to search the defendant's apartment. We conclude that the affidavit was sufficient to establish the CI's basis of knowledge and veracity, and that the information provided by the CI, along with information gathered by the police, as set forth in the affidavit in support of the search warrant, established probable cause. Accordingly, we reverse the order allowing the defendant's motion to suppress.

         Background.

         The affidavit filed as part of the warrant application contained the following facts.

         In November, 2015, Detective Gracia of the New Bedford police department spoke with the CI, whose identity and whereabouts were known to the police.[1] The CI stated that they had contacted the defendant, Paulo Monteiro, by telephone or had "show[n] up [at] his residence" in New Bedford to purchase cocaine in the past. The CI informed Detective Gracia that they continue to purchase cocaine from the defendant. The CI provided Detective Gracia with a physical description of the seller ("a Cape Verdean male 20 years old approx 6' tall with a medium build") and the seller's address. Detective Gracia confirmed via the police department's computer system that a person named Paulo Monteiro had the same listed address as that provided by the CI. Detective Gracia also reviewed the defendant's criminal record and determined that he was on probation for statutory rape. A booking photograph of the defendant was shown to the CI. The CI stated that the person in the photograph, whom the CI identified as the defendant, was the person who had sold cocaine to the CI in the past.

         Detective Gracia later met the CI to arrange a controlled buy of cocaine from the defendant. The CI was searched and determined to be free of contraband and money. Detective Gracia then gave the CI money to purchase cocaine from the defendant. Detective Gracia and other members of the New Bedford police department maintained surveillance of the CI. They observed the CI walking toward the rear exterior door of the defendant's apartment building.[2] A short time later, the CI was seen leaving the walkway leading to the rear exterior door. The defendant was not observed entering or exiting the apartment building through the rear exterior door. The CI was kept under surveillance until the CI met Detective Gracia at a predetermined location where the CI provided Detective Gracia with a quantity of what the CI said was cocaine. The CI stated that they purchased the cocaine from the defendant inside his first-floor apartment. The CI was again searched and determined to be free of money and contraband. The material the CI turned over to the police was field tested and found to be cocaine.

         Detective Gracia applied for, and a magistrate subsequently issued, a warrant to search the defendant's apartment. Upon execution of the search warrant, the police found narcotics and drug paraphernalia inside the defendant's apartment. An indictment was returned against the defendant for trafficking in cocaine. See G. L. c. 94C, § 32E(b). The defendant moved to suppress the contraband and related drug paraphernalia found during the search on the basis that the affidavit provided to the magistrate did not establish probable cause. The defendant's motion to suppress was allowed after the motion judge concluded that the affidavit failed to establish both the CI's basis of knowledge and veracity. For the reasons set forth below, we reverse.

         D ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.