from the Judgment of Sentence March 12, 2015 In the Court of
Common Pleas of Pike County Criminal Division at No(s):
BEFORE: STABILE, J., DUBOW, J., and STEVENS, P.J.E.
Edwin Dolores Quiles, appeals from the Judgment of Sentence
entered in the Pike County Court of Common Pleas following
his conviction of two counts of Delivery of a Controlled
Substance, and one count of Criminal Conspiracy to Deliver a
Controlled Substance. After careful review, we affirm
Appellant's convictions, but vacate his Judgment of
Sentence because the trial court erroneously considered
Appellant's Connecticut conviction for simple assault
when determining Appellant's Recidivism Risk Reduction
Incentive ("RRRI") eligibility.
summarize the relevant factual and procedural history as
follows. On October 24, 2013, Appellant and his co-defendant
pulled into a gas station in Pike County, Pennsylvania.
Appellant went into the gas station, while his co-defendant
made a pre-arranged sale of heroin to an undercover member of
the Pike County Detective's Office. Following the
controlled buy, Police Officer Joseph Ostrom entered the gas
station and placed Appellant under arrest, while other
officers took his co-defendant into custody.
transported Appellant to the Pike County Detective Bureau
Office, where Chief Detective Michael Jones and Officer
Ostrom interviewed Appellant. At the beginning of the
interview, which was conducted in
Chief Detective Jones advised Appellant of his rights
pursuant to Miranda. Appellant acknowledged his
rights, signed a written waiver of those rights, and spoke
with Chief Detective Jones and Officer Ostrom. Appellant also
signed written consent forms for the search of his automobile
and his cellular phone.
was arrested and charged with two counts of Delivery of a
Controlled Substance, one count of Criminal Conspiracy to
Deliver a Controlled Substance, and related possession
charges. Appellant filed a
to Suppress, seeking to suppress statements he gave to
investigators and the evidence the investigators recovered in
his phone and car on the grounds that he did not sufficiently
understand English and was under the influence of heroin at
the time he waived his rights and consented to the search.
trial court held a hearing on the Motion, at which Chief
Detective Jones, Officer Ostrom, and Appellant testified. The
trial court denied the Motion.
proceeded to a jury trial, and the jury convicted him of two
counts of Delivery of a Controlled Substance, and one count
of Criminal Conspiracy to Deliver a Controlled Substance.
March 12, 2015, the trial court sentenced Appellant to an
aggregate term of nine to thirty years of imprisonment. The
court found that Appellant was precluded from RRRI
eligibility "due to [Appellant's] previous
conviction for Assault in the State of Connecticut."
Sentencing Order, filed 3/12/15, at 2.
filed Post-Sentence Motions, which the trial court denied.
Appellant timely appealed, raising the following issues:
1. Did the [t]rial [c]ourt commit error by denying
[Appellant's] motions to suppress the contents of his
cell phone and his statements to the police by a finding that
he knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily consented to
both the search of the phone and to speak with the police?
2. Did the [t]rial [c]ourt commit error in its Sentencing
Order by finding [that Appellant] was ineligible for RRRI?
Appellant's Brief at 8.
the instant appeal was pending, our review of the record
revealed that the Pre-Sentence Investigation
("PSI") report was missing from the certified
record. We issued an Order directing the trial court to
supplement the record, and the trial court complied. With all
necessary documents now before us, we turn to Appellant's
arguments on appeal.
well-settled standard of review in an appeal from an order
denying a motion to suppress is as follows:
Our standard of review in addressing a challenge to the
denial of a suppression motion is limited to determining
whether the suppression court's factual findings are
supported by the record and whether the legal conclusions
drawn from those facts are correct. Because the Commonwealth
prevailed before the suppression court, we may consider only
the evidence of the Commonwealth and so much of the evidence
for the defense as remains uncontradicted when read in the
context of the record as a whole. Where the suppression
court's factual findings are supported by the record, we
are bound by these findings and may reverse only if the
court's legal conclusions are erroneous.
Commonwealth v. Jones, 988 A.2d 649, 654 (Pa. 2010)
Pennsylvania, "the Fourth Amendment to the United States
Constitution and Article I, Section 8 of the Pennsylvania
Constitution protect citizens from unreasonable searches and
seizures." Commonwealth v. Clemens, 66 A.3d
373, 378 (Pa. Super. 2013) (internal alteration and quotation
marks omitted). If an individual gives valid consent, then
the ensuing search is not unreasonable and the
individual's constitutional rights are not violated by
the police's conduct. See Florida v. Jimeno, 500
U.S. 248, 250-51 (1991). To be considered valid, the consent
must be "the product of an essentially free and
unconstrained choice-not the result of duress or coercion,
express or implied, or a will overborne-under the totality of
the circumstances." Commonwealth v. Caban, 60
A.3d 120, 130 (Pa. Super. 2012), overruled on other grounds
as recognized in Commonwealth v. Coleman, 130 A.3d
38, 42 n.1 (Pa. Super. 2015).
"the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution
and Article I, Section 9 of the Pennsylvania Constitution
protect an individual's right not to be compelled to be a
witness against himself." Commonwealth v.
Fischere, 70 A.3d 1270, 1275-76 (Pa. Super. 2013). This
right may also be waived, if, under the totality of the
circumstances, the waiver is "the product of an
essentially free and unconstrained choice."
Commonwealth v. Cruz, 71 A.3d 998, 1005 (Pa. Super.
argues that neither his consent to search his property nor
his waiver of his Miranda rights were freely and
voluntarily given. Specifically, Appellant avers that he was
under the influence of heroin during his ...