In 2019, Johnny Hollingsworth discovered his tiller was missing from his property and called police. A few days later his trailer also went missing. He then got a call from Sheriff’s Investigator Kevin Baysinger to inform him that both his tiller and trailer had been located at a local pawn shop.
Tadise Seales was then arrested and confessed five days later. He was convicted of grand larceny and sentenced to ten years as a habitual offender. On appeal, he argued the 48 hour rule was violated so his confession should be suppressed. MSC affirms.
Rule 6.03 of the Uniform Rules of Circuit and County Court requires that every person in custody be taken, without unnecessary delay and within 48 hours of arrest, before a judicial officer or other person authorized by statute for an initial appearance.
In Jones, however, we said that a violation of Rule 6.03 alone, however, will not result in the suppression of evidence where the defendant was informed of his rights and made a knowing and voluntary waiver.
We also said in Lawrence that there is no Fourth Amendment violation when Rule 6.03 has been violated.
The record amply supports the trial court’s finding that Seales was informed of his rights and had made a knowing and voluntary waiver of those rights, without any threats or promises, prior to giving his statement. Seales’s claim of error is without merit.
There is now a Mississippi Rules of Criminal Procedure (MRCP) that has replaced the Uniform Rules of Circuit and County Court. Sections 5.1 and 5.2 of MRCP provide the rules on getting a defendant to an initial appearance. Like 6.03, a violation of 5.1 or 5.2 will not automatically render a confession inadmissible. You can see the MRCP here.