Brian E. Hardin, Appellant-Defendant,
State of Indiana, Appellee-Plaintiff.
from the Morgan Circuit Court The Honorable Matthew G.
Hanson, Judge Trial Court Cause No. 55C01-1709-F2-1851
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT Glen E. Koch II Boren, Oliver &
Coffey, LLP Martinsville, Indiana
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE Curtis T. Hill, Jr. Attorney General
of Indiana Monika Prekopa Talbot Supervising Deputy Attorney
General Indianapolis, Indiana
Brian E. Hardin appeals his conviction for dealing in
methamphetamine as a level 2 felony. He raises one issue
which we revise and restate as whether the trial court abused
its discretion in admitting evidence obtained from a vehicle
located on the premises of a residence for which a search
warrant was issued. We affirm.
and Procedural History
In September 2017, Indiana State Police Detective Joshua
Allen was involved in an investigation into the finance and
delivery of methamphetamine in Morgan County and surrounding
counties. The main target of the investigation was Jerry
Hall. Intercepted communications from a wiretap brought law
enforcement's attention to Hardin.
On September 26, 2017, Detective Allen completed an affidavit
in support of a search warrant for Hardin's residence and
asserted in part:
Surveillance was able to identify Hardin going to and from
[Hall's] residence. Surveillance was able to identify
Hardin going to 5426 Collett Drive East Camby, Morgan County,
Indiana. Hardin's vehicle was also seen parked at 5426
Collett Drive East Camby, Indiana in the early morning hours
of 09.26.20117 [sic]. This officer was able to identify this
vehicle as Hardin's through the Indiana Bureau of Motor
Vehicles Information and Hardin has been seen driving the
On 09/25/2017, Brian Hardin had conversations with Jerry Hall
in reference to dealing methamphetamine. Hardin indicated he
was out dealing methamphetamine and picking up money.
Hardin's cellular telephone location put him in the area
of Martinsville Morgan County Indiana during this
Brian Hardin has had several intercepted telephone calls
reference to him being involved in the conspiracy to deal
methamphetamine with Jerry Hall.
Suppression Hearing Exhibit 2.
The court issued a search warrant, which states in part:
You are therefore AUTHORIZED AND ORDERED, in the name of the
State of Indiana, with the necessary and proper assistance,
to enter into (upon) the following described residence,
to-wit: single story gray sided residence, with a partial
brick front, and attached garage, and partially covered front
porch with the numeric 5426 attached located at 5426 Collett
Drive East, Camby, Morgan County, Indiana . . . .
Suppression Hearing Exhibit 1.
Detective Allen, Indiana State Trooper Kent William Rohlfing,
Detective Matt Fleener, and Indiana State Trooper John
Patrick, arrived at Hardin's residence to execute the
search warrant around 11 p.m. on September 26, 2017. Officers
initially cleared the residence for subjects and then began
searching for evidence and found plastic bags, heat seal bags
that contained a crystal substance, digital scales, syringes,
and two pieces of paper consistent with what Detective Allen
knew to be a "pay and owe sheet." Transcript Volume
II at 118. At some point, Hardin's girlfriend arrived at
the residence and indicated that Hardin was picking up food
at McDonald's. Trooper Patrick and Detective Allen left
in separate vehicles to attempt to locate Hardin.
Trooper Rohlfing observed Hardin arrive in a pickup truck and
heard the garage door open at the same time as a vehicle
pulled into the driveway. Trooper Rohlfing heard the door
open and heard Detective Fleener identify himself as State
Police and tell Hardin to show his hands. Hardin backpedaled
in a quick manner, threw two McDonald's cups in the air,
tripped, fell, kicked his arms and legs, and scooted along
the ground. Detective Fleener "was able to get on top of
[Hardin], basically in a full mount position," and
Hardin continued to scream and kick. Id. at 74.
Hardin eventually was able to spin to his stomach and raise
himself off the ground. Trooper Rohlfing, who had injured his
shoulder gaining entry to the residence, placed his foot on
the back of Hardin's head and pushed him straight to the
ground, stopping the fight.
Trooper Rohlfing called Trooper Patrick and Detective Allen
to inform them that Hardin was in custody at the residence,
and Trooper Patrick and Detective Allen returned to the
residence. Meanwhile, other officers located approximately
$327, 000 in cash and over a pound of methamphetamine in
executing the search warrant on Hall's residence.
Detective Allen performed a search of Hardin's vehicle
and found more than 100 grams of methamphetamine in a bag
underneath the driver's seat.
On September 28, 2017, the State charged Hardin with Count I,
dealing in methamphetamine as a level 2 felony, and Count II,
possession of methamphetamine as a level 3 felony. On
November 2, 2017, the State alleged that Hardin was an
habitual offender. On April 17, 2018, Hardin filed a motion
to suppress all evidence seized in the search of his home
because "the search went beyond the scope of items and
areas allowed to be searched by the Search Warrant . . . and
a search of the vehicle which [he] had driven to the scene
was searched without probable cause or authorization by a
search warrant." Appellant's Appendix Volume II at
On July 11, 2018, the court held a hearing on Hardin's
motion at which Detective Allen testified. On July 18, 2018,
the court denied Hardin's motion to suppress.
Specifically, the court's order found that Hardin's
vehicle "rested in the driveway and was therefore on the
curtilage of the residence" and that "the search
warrant that only described the residence of [Hardin]
authorized the search of the vehicle while it remained within
the curtilage of ...