Joseph C. Hudson, Appellant-Defendant,
State of Indiana, Appellee-Plaintiff.
from the Gibson Circuit Court The Honorable Jeffrey F. Meade,
Judge Trial Court Cause No. 26C01-1605-F5-449
Attorney for Appellant John Andrew Goodridge Evansville,
Attorneys for Appellee Curtis T. Hill, Jr. Attorney General
of Indiana Chandra K. Hein Deputy Attorney General
OF THE CASE
Appellant-Defendant, Joseph C. Hudson (Hudson), appeals the
trial court's denial of his motion to suppress certain
We affirm. ISSUES
[¶3] Hudson raises two issues in this
interlocutory appeal, which we restate as:
(1) Whether the trial court properly denied Hudson's
motion to suppress his statements made prior to being given
Miranda warnings; and
(2) Whether the trial court properly denied Hudson's
motion to suppress the evidence discovered pursuant to a
warrantless search of his vehicle.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
On April 29, 2016, Officer Jason B. Wright of the Owensville
Police Department (Officer Wright) was dispatched to 205
North Scott Street in Owensville, Indiana, on a report of a
domestic disturbance. Officer Wright was informed that the
ex-husband, later identified as Hudson, was on the scene and
possibly had a handgun. When Officer Wright arrived, he saw
Hudson, Caligaro Sparacino (Sparacino), and Sparacino's
son standing next to a black Dodge pick-up. Officer Wright
placed Hudson in handcuffs and put him in the back of his
After placing Hudson in the backseat of the police vehicle,
Officer Wright "asked him what was going on this evening
and where the gun was at." (Transcript p. 6). Hudson
responded that "he didn't know anything about a gun,
and then he told [the officer] that [he] and his ex-wife got
in an argument. Then the daughter stepped in." (Tr. p.
6). Returning to the other people on the scene, Officer
Wright spoke with Sparacino. Sparacino informed him that
Hudson wanted help loading a brake press. While Sparacino was
helping Hudson, an argument broke out between Hudson and his
ex-wife, "and the daughter stepped in between them. Then
[Hudson] knocked the daughter down." (Tr. p. 7).
Sparacino explained that he tried to break up the parties,
and he was briefly successful when Hudson returned to his
truck. Hudson's daughter confirmed Sparacino's
version of the event and added that "her dad hit her in
the face and knocked her down." (Tr. p. 27). She advised
the officer that after Sparacino interfered, she saw her
father return to the truck and get a gun. "She watched
him walk to the front of the truck and cock the gun."
(Tr. p. 27).
Based on Hudson's daughter's disclosure and his own
safety concerns, Officer Wright searched the truck and
"found an empty holster on the driver side seat."
(Tr. p. 16). Officer Wright returned to his police vehicle to
speak with Hudson again. Officer Wright "still
didn't locate a gun, [but] [he] knew there was a gun
somewhere. [He] just didn't know where it was at."
(Tr. p. 17). Officer Wright told Hudson that he had found a
gun holster and gave him Miranda warnings. He then
asked Hudson "why he got the handgun out. And ...