Can Police Confront a Suspect With a Family Member to Extract Confession ?

In People v. Wright, 294 Ill. App. 3d 606, 229 Ill. Dec. 158, 691 N.E.2d 94 (1998), the police illegally arrested and transported defendant to the police station along with his brother, who was properly arrested on an outstanding warrant. At the station, defendant's brother gave a statement to police implicating defendant in a murder. Defendant initially told the police that the gun accidentally went off. After being confronted with his brother's written statement and his alleged alibi's statement denying she was with defendant, defendant gave a written confession. Affirming the admission of the confession into evidence despite defendant's illegal arrest, the court first found that defendant's brother provided independent probable cause to permit the police to detain and question defendant. Wright, 294 Ill. App. 3d at 613. Next, the court concluded that the events of the police station were sufficient intervening factors to render the statement admissible. The court noted that, before defendant confessed, defendant's brother implicated him, the police confronted defendant with his brother's statement, the police repeatedly gave defendant Miranda warnings, and the police treated defendant well. Wright, 294 Ill. App. 3d at 613-14.