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2010-UP-554 - State v. Steele

THIS OPINION HAS NO PRECEDENTIAL VALUE.  IT SHOULD NOT BE CITED OR RELIED ON AS PRECEDENT IN ANY PROCEEDING EXCEPT AS PROVIDED BY RULE 268(d)(2), SCACR.

THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
In The Court of Appeals

The State, Respondent,

v.

Bruce E. Steele, Appellant.


Appeal From Lexington County
 James W. Johnson, Jr., Circuit Court Judge


Unpublished Opinion No. 2010-UP-554
Submitted December 1, 2010 – Filed December 21, 2010   


AFFIRMED


Appellate Defender Kathrine H. Hudgins, of Columbia, for Appellant.

Attorney General Henry Dargan McMaster, Chief Deputy Attorney General John W. McIntosh, Assistant Deputy Attorney General Salley W. Elliott, and Assistant Attorney General William M. Blitch, Jr., all of Columbia; and Solicitor Donald V. Myers, of Lexington, for Respondent.

PER CURIAM:  Bruce E. Steele was convicted of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor and two counts of lewd act on a minor.  Steele appeals his convictions, arguing the trial court erred in refusing to suppress two incriminating statements.  Steele argues one of his statements was given without Miranda[1] warnings while he was in custody and the other statement was given after he had already provided an incriminating statement.  We affirm[2] pursuant to Rule 220(b)(1), SCACR, and the following authorities: 

1.  As to whether the trial court erred in admitting Steele's statement given before he had been given Miranda warnings: State v. Evans, 354 S.C. 579, 583, 582 S.E.2d 407, 409 (2003) (holding appellate review of whether a person is in custody for Miranda purposes is limited to a determination of whether the trial judge's ruling is supported by the record); State v. Navy, 386 S.C. 294, 301, 688 S.E.2d 838, 841 (2010) (holding that if "it is debatable whether a reasonable person would have believed himself to be in custody at the time the first statement was given" then "the trial court's finding that respondent was not in custody should [be] upheld [if] it is supported by the record"); State v. Easler, 327 S.C. 121, 127, 489 S.E.2d 617, 621 (1997) (interpreting custody to mean a "formal arrest or detention associated with a formal arrest").

2.  As to whether the trial court erred in admitting Steele's statement given after he was given Miranda warnings: State v. Campbell, 287 S.C. 377, 379, 339 S.E.2d 109, 110 (1985) (finding an "initial failure to administer Miranda warnings before a statement is given does not taint a subsequent statement, made after a suspect has been fully advised of and waived his Miranda rights, when both statements are voluntary").

 AFFIRMED.

 FEW, C.J., and SHORT and WILLIAMS, JJ., concur.


[1] Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966).

[2] We decide this case without oral argument pursuant to Rule 215, SCACR.