Is Grand Jury Subpoena Used As a Pretext to Arrest Legal ?
Is it legal to use a grand jury subpoena in order to go on a ''fishing expedition'' ?
In Boyle v. State, 820 S.W.2d 122 (Tex. Crim. App. 1989), Amarillo police found the body of a murdered hitchhiker.
They received information that the trucker, who was seen picking up the deceased, would be in Diboll the next day.
Lacking sufficient probable cause to issue an arrest warrant, a Sergeant with the Amarillo police department acquired a grand jury subpoena and attachment for the defendant.
This information was dispatched to Diboll police.
The Diboll police held the defendant for the Amarillo police department.
The defendant was given his Miranda warnings prior to custodial interrogation.
After the initial interrogation, the defendant was arraigned and again given his Miranda warnings.
He later signed a consent to search form and incriminating evidence was discovered pursuant to this search.
In a hearing on a motion to suppress, the defendant contended his arrest, pursuant to the grand jury subpoena, was illegal and violated his Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, as well as his rights under Art. I, Sec.9 of the Texas Constitution.
He argued that his arrest was merely a "pretext arrest" and was used to obtain incriminating evidence which the State could not obtain in any legal manner.
The State vigorously asserted it was not a pretext arrest because it obtained a subpoena pursuant to Article 20.10, and Article 24.15 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
On original submission, the Court of Criminal Appeals found that the arrest was illegal for lack of probable cause.