Court of Appeals of Arizona, First Division, Department A
Not for Publication -Rule 111, Rules of the Arizona Supreme Court
Appeal from the Superior Court in Maricopa County Cause No. CR2007-132864-001 The Honorable Glenn M. Davis, Judge (Retired)
Thomas C. Horne, Attorney General Phoenix by Joseph T. Maziarz, Chief Counsel, Criminal Appeals/Capital Litigation Section and Adele Ponce, Assistant Attorney General Attorneys for Appellee
James J. Haas, Maricopa County Public Defender Phoenix by Thomas Baird, Deputy Public Defender Attorneys for Appellant
MAURICE PORTLEY, Presiding Judge
¶1 Kent Lee Manning appeals his conviction and sentence for misconduct involving weapons. He argues that the trial court erred by denying his motion to suppress evidence. For reasons that follow, we affirm.
FACTS AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
¶2 While Manning was on probation and living in his mother's house, two probation officers accompanied by police officers went to her house to arrest her on a felony warrant for a probation violation. Once inside the home, the police officers conducted a protective sweep and found Manning's mother hiding in one of the back bedrooms. During the protective sweep, a police officer observed .40 caliber ammunition on a table just outside of Manning's bedroom. He then notified one of the probation officers. Knowing that Manning was on probation, the probation officer searched Manning's bedroom and found a .40 caliber handgun in a holster under a table next to the bed. Manning was subsequently charged with misconduct involving weapons (prohibited possessor), a class 4 felony.
¶3 Before trial, Manning moved to suppress evidence seized from his bedroom, including the handgun, arguing that the search was unlawful. The trial court held an evidentiary hearing and later denied the motion, ruling the search was constitutional. The court determined that the warrantless search was authorized because the probation officer had reasonable suspicion that Manning was engaged in criminal activity and/or had violated the terms of his probation.
¶4 The case went to trial and the jury found Manning guilty as charged. He was subsequently sentenced as a repetitive offender to a presumptive ten-year prison term.
¶5 We review a trial court's ruling on a motion to suppress "for abuse of discretion if it involves a discretionary issue, but we review constitutional and purely legal issues de novo." State v. Gay, 214 Ariz. 214, 217, ¶ 4, 150 P.3d 787, 790 (App. 2007) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted). We restrict our review to the evidence presented at the suppression hearing and consider it in the light most favorable to upholding the ruling. State v. Blackmore, 186 Ariz. 630, 631, 925 P.2d 1347, 1349 (1996); State v. Walker, 215 Ariz. 91, 94, ¶ 16, 158 P.3d 220, 223 (App. 2007).
¶6 The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution protects against unreasonable searches and seizures and provides that warrants may be issued only upon probable cause. U.S. Const. amend. IV. Although the Fourth Amendment demonstrates a "strong preference for searches conducted pursuant to a warrant" backed by probable cause, Illinois v. Gates, 462 U.S. 213, 236 (1983) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted), a reasonableness standard is applied in reviewing warrantless searches and seizures in a variety of circumstances. State v. Allen, 216 Ariz. 320, 326, ¶ 24, 166 P.3d 111, 117 (App. 2007); see also Brigham City, Utah v. Stuart, 547 U.S. 398, 403 (2006) (noting that "the ultimate touchstone of the Fourth Amendment is 'reasonableness'").
¶7 The United States Supreme Court has held that a warrantless search of a probationer is valid if it is "supported by reasonable suspicion and authorized by a condition of probation." United States v. Knights, 534 U.S. 112, 122 (2001); see also State v. Montgomery, 115 Ariz. 583, 584, 566 P.2d 1329, 1330 (1977) (recognizing that "[w]hile defendant is on probation his expectations ...