Submitted September 13, 2017
from the Superior Court of the District of Columbia
(CF2-14002-15) Hon. Lynn Leibovitz, Trial Judge.
E. Fearnley was on the brief for appellant.
Charming D. Phillips, United States Attorney at the time the
brief was filed, and Elizabeth Trosman, Elizabeth H. Danello,
Monica Trigoso, and Akhi Johnson, Assistant United States
Attorneys, were on the brief for appellee.
Fisher, Thompson, and McLeese, Associate Judges.
McLeese, Associate Judge
Tyrone Wade challenges his convictions for unlawful
possession of a firearm, possession of an unregistered
firearm, and unlawful possession of ammunition. Mr. Wade
argues that the trial court erroneously denied his motions to
suppress evidence, that the evidence was insufficient to
support his convictions, and that the trial court erroneously
imposed a three-year mandatory minimum sentence. We affirm.
trial, Mr. Wade moved to suppress certain tangible evidence
as obtained in violation of the Fourth Amendment and certain
identification evidence as the result of an unduly suggestive
pretrial identification procedure. The trial court held an
evidentiary hearing on the motions. Viewed in the light most
favorable to the trial court's rulings, the evidence at
the hearing was as follows. At approximately 3:30 p.m. on
October 8, 2015, an anonymous 911 caller reported a man with
a gun in his waist walking in the 1200 block of 7th Street
NW. The caller described the man as a black male wearing a
navy blue shirt, a tan hat, and blue jeans, walking with
another black male wearing a light green shirt. When police
officers responded, they saw Mr. Wade, who matched the 911
caller's description of the man with the gun, walking
with another man who matched the description of the
gunman's companion. The two men were walking about a
block away from the location provided by the 911 caller. The
officers pulled their police cruiser alongside the two men,
who both began running. One of the officers, Officer
Christopher Brown, chased Mr. Wade. While running, Mr. Wade
discarded items from his hands, including what appeared to be
a cellphone. Mr. Wade continued running, with his right arm
bent and his hand near his waist area. During the chase,
Officer Brown briefly lost sight of Mr. Wade when Mr. Wade
ran around a shed. Officer Brown regained sight of Mr. Wade
soon thereafter and eventually apprehended Mr. Wade on the
other side of the shed near a fence. Officer Brown handcuffed
Mr. Wade and patted Mr. Wade down, but did not feel a gun.
a civilian eyewitness, Manuel Torres, reported to the police
that he had seen a black male with an athletic build run by
and toss a gun near a dumpster adjacent to the same shed. Mr.
Torres saw the suspect from about five feet away. An officer
subsequently recovered a gun lying on the ground in plain
view near the dumpster. Because Mr. Torres primarily spoke
Spanish, the officers requested an interpreter. The officer
who responded to interpret, Officer Kelvin Garcia, eventually
escorted Mr. Torres to a show-up identification procedure.
show-up, which occurred at 4:29 in the afternoon, Mr. Wade
was standing handcuffed between two police cars, with police
officers nearby. From about fifteen to twenty feet away, Mr.
Torres identified Mr. Wade as the man he had seen running
past the shed. After the identification, Mr. Wade was placed
under arrest and searched. Officers found six .357-caliber
bullets in Mr. Wade's pocket.
trial court denied both suppression motions, and the case
proceeded to trial. The evidence at trial was largely
consistent with the evidence at the suppression hearing, with
the following differences and additions. Mr. Torres testified
that he saw two people run by the shed area. Mr. Wade was the
second person who ran by, and one of Mr. Wade's hands was
high on his waist. Mr. Torres did not see Mr. Wade actually
throw the gun. Rather, he saw Mr. Wade run behind the
dumpster and "at the same time" saw a gun in the
air coming from behind the dumpster. After the gun landed,
Mr. Torres did not see anyone else near the shed. Officer
Garcia, who escorted Mr. Torres to the show-up procedure, had
lived in the area of the incident and recognized Mr. Torres
as a maintenance man in the area. The gun recovered by the
dumpster was a .357-caliber revolver loaded with six rounds
of ammunition. The parties stipulated that Mr. Wade had
previously been convicted of a crime punishable by
imprisonment for a term exceeding one year and did not
possess a gun-registration certificate to lawfully possess a
first address Mr. Wade's challenges to the trial
court's denial of the motion to suppress evidence on
Fourth Amendment grounds. In reviewing a ruling on a motion
to suppress, we take the facts and all reasonable inferences
in favor of the trial court's ruling. Peay v. United
States, 597 A.2d 1318, 1320 (D.C. 1991) (en banc). We
review de novo whether officers had ...