County District Court File No. 10-CR-14-1286
Swanson, Attorney General, St. Paul, Minnesota; and Mark
Metz, Carver County Attorney, Eric E. Doolittle, Assistant
County Attorney, Chaska, Minnesota (for respondent)
Cathryn Middlebrook, Chief Appellate Public Defender, Steven
P. Russett, Assistant Public Defender, St. Paul, Minnesota
Considered and decided by Johnson, Presiding Judge; Reyes,
Judge; and Smith, Tracy M., Judge.
district court order compelling a criminal defendant to
provide a fingerprint to unlock the defendant's cellphone
does not violate the Fifth Amendment privilege against
TRACY M., Judge
Matthew Vaughn Diamond appeals his convictions of
second-degree burglary, misdemeanor theft, and fourth-degree
criminal damage to property following a jury trial. On
appeal, Diamond argues his convictions must be reversed
because: (1) police seized his property in violation of the
Fourth Amendment; (2) the district court violated his Fifth
Amendment privilege against compelled self-incrimination by
ordering him to provide his fingerprint so police could
search his cellphone; and (3) the state's circumstantial
evidence was insufficient. We affirm.
October 30, 2014, M.H. left her Chaska home between 10:30 and
10:45 a.m. to run errands. M.H. returned home around noon and
noticed that the attached garage's side-entry door
appeared to have been kicked in from the outside. M.H. called
the police after discovering that a safe, a laptop, and
several items of jewelry were missing from her home. While
waiting for police to arrive, M.H. found an envelope in her
driveway that had the name of S.W. written on it. Police took
photographs and measurements of the shoeprints left on the
garage's side-entry door.
Nelson of the Chaska Police Department used state databases
to determine S.W.'s car model and license plate number
and that S.W. had pawned several pieces of jewelry at a
Shakopee pawn shop on October 30. M.H. later verified that
the pawned jewelry was stolen from her home. On November 4,
police located S.W.'s car, which Diamond was driving at
the time. Diamond was arrested on an outstanding warrant
unrelated to this case. He was booked at the Scott County
jail, where staff collected and stored his property,
including his shoes and cellphone.
following day, Detective Nelson went to the jail and viewed
the property that was taken from Diamond. Detective Nelson
observed similarities between the tread of Diamond's
shoes and the shoeprints left on the garage's side-entry
door. Detective Nelson informed the jail staff that she was
going to seek a warrant to seize Diamond's property and
gave instructions not to release the property to anyone.
Later that day, S.W. attempted to collect Diamond's
property but was told that it could not be released.
November 6, Detective Nelson obtained and executed a warrant
to search for, and seize, Diamond's shoes and cellphone.
On November 12, Detective Nelson obtained an additional
warrant to search the contents of Diamond's cellphone.
Detective Nelson was unable to unlock the cellphone. She
returned the warrant on November 21.
December, the state filed a motion to compel Diamond to
provide his fingerprint on the cellphone to unlock the phone.
The motion was deferred to the contested omnibus hearing.
Following that hearing, the district court issued an order,
filed February 11, 2015, concluding that the warrant to
search Diamond's cellphone was supported by probable
cause and that compelling Diamond to provide his fingerprint
to unlock the cellphone does not violate his Fifth Amendment
privilege against compelled self-incrimination. The district
court granted the state's motion to compel and ordered
Diamond to provide a fingerprint or thumbprint to unlock his
cellphone. Diamond refused to comply. On April 3, the
district court found Diamond in civil contempt and informed
him that compliance with the order would remedy the civil
contempt. Diamond provided his fingerprint, and police
immediately searched his cellphone.
second omnibus hearing Diamond challenged the refusal to
release his cellphone and shoes to S.W., arguing that it
constituted a warrantless seizure not justified by any
exception to the warrant requirement. The district
court's April 3 order concluded that the seizure was
justified by exigent circumstances and was tailored to
protect against the destruction of evidence while a warrant
was sought and obtained. Diamond thereafter brought a pro se
motion to suppress all evidence derived from his cellphone
and shoes, which the district court denied, relying on the
previous orders from February 11 and April 3.
Diamond's jury trial, S.W. testified that: (1) she
believed she was working the day of the burglary; (2) the
envelope found in M.H.'s driveway belonged to S.W., and
it was in her car the last time she saw it; (3) S.W.
sometimes let Diamond use her car when she was working; and
(4) on the day of the burglary, Diamond gave her M.H.'s
stolen jewelry, and the two of them traveled to the Shakopee
pawn shop, where she sold the jewelry. In addition, the state
also introduced evidence that: (1) Diamond's wallet and
identification card were found in S.W.'s car; (2) Diamond
and S.W. exchanged phone calls and text messages throughout
the day of the burglary; (3) Diamond's cellphone pinged
off cell towers near M.H.'s residence on the day of the
burglary; (4) the tread pattern on Diamond's shoes was
similar to the shoeprints on the garage's side-entry
door; and (5) while in ...