Comer v. State

In Comer v. State, 776 S.W.2d 191 (Tex.Crim.App. 1989) the Court recognized that an exclusionary analysis under Article 38.23(a) necessarily entails a causal connection analysis. There, the appellant argued that his confession should have been suppressed because the police officer failed to comply with Family Code 52.02(a). The Court concluded that detaining a juvenile for approximately three hours to obtain his confession violated the 52.02(a) requirement that a juvenile be taken immediately to either an authorized officer of the juvenile court or to a juvenile detention center. However, we made it clear that a violation of 52.02(a) does not necessarily make a statement given by the child inadmissible. Comer, 776 S.W.2d at 196. The Court further held that if evidence obtained in violation of the Family Code is to be excluded, Article 38.23(a) is the proper mechanism for exclusion. Id. at 196. The Court implicitly held that a "causal connection" analysis is appropriate. The Court stated that "we cannot say with any degree of confidence that had Comer been transported 'forthwith' to the custody of the juvenile detention facility, where he may have had access to, if not counsel, at least his parents, ... he would have still chosen to confess his crime." Comer, 776 S.W.2d at 197.