Appeal from Talladega Circuit Court. CC-93-272. Jerry Fielding, TRIAL JUDGE.
Rule 39(k) Motion Denied October 21, 1994. Rehearing Denied October 21, 1994. Certiorari Denied January 6, 1995. Released for Publication April 1, 1995. As Amended.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Bowen
Miguel Rudy Worthington, the appellant, was convicted of the intentional murder of David Marler and was sentenced to 40 years' imprisonment. He raises six issues on this direct appeal from that conviction.
The appellant asserts that the statements he made to the arresting officer prior to the time he was advised of his Miranda *fn1 rights were improperly admitted into evidence. Those comments directed the police to the bloodstained clothes worn by the appellant on November 13, 1992, during the commission of the murder.
The appellant was arrested in Florida by Corporal Lonel Daniels of the Santa Rosa County, Florida Sheriff's Department based on an Alabama warrant charging the appellant with murder. Corporal Daniels' son, Billy, was a friend of the appellant's. Daniels arrested the appellant while the appellant was walking on the road in front of Corporal Daniels' house. Daniels testified that he placed the appellant in his patrol car and that the appellant
"asked me if I would do him a favor. And I told him I would try. Not knowing what it was I said I would try. He advised me at that time that he had put some clothing, personal clothes on Panhandle Trail. He said that is near the end of the first road, he said behind a telephone post. And he asked me if I could pick them up for him since he was going to jail. I told him I would look for them and try to do so.
"At that time he said also that there was some clothing that he had that had blood on it, he said is up under the bridge at Gulf Breeze. The bridge going over. He said, 'It's under the plastic there.' He said, 'I have them in a bag.' He said, 'I put them under there and I marked an X on the wall.' He said, 'I marked an X where they were."
"And when he got through with that, I said, 'Miguel, if I were you I wouldn't answer any more questions until after you have been advised of your rights.' Which at that time he said, 'I don't have anything else to say.'" R. 226-28.
"Miranda has never been held to apply to statements voluntarily made by defendants. If a defendant spontaneously volunteers information, either before or after being given the Miranda warnings, those statements need not be suppressed." United States v. Edwards, 885 F.2d 377, 387 (7th Cir. 1989). See also Crawford v. State, 479 So.2d 1349, 1352 (Ala.Cr.App. 1985) ("An unsolicited remark, not in response to any interrogation, does not fall within the Miranda rule"); United States v. Lawrence, 952 F.2d 1034, 1036 (8th Cir.) ("The protections afforded a suspect under [Miranda ] apply only when the suspect is both in custody and being interrogated. A voluntary statement made by a suspect, not in response to interrogation, is not barred by the Fifth Amendment and is admissible with or without the giving of Miranda warnings."), cert. denied, ___ U.S. ___, 112 S.Ct. 1777, 118 L.Ed.2d 434 (1992).
"Any statement given freely and voluntarily without any compelling influences is, of course, admissible in evidence. The fundamental import of the privilege while an individual is in custody is not whether he is allowed to talk to the police without the benefit of warnings and counsel, but whether he can be interrogated. . . . Volunteered statements of any kind are not barred by the Fifth Amendment and their admissibility is not affected by [the holding in Miranda ]."
Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 478, 86 S.Ct. 1602, 1630, 16 L.Ed.2d 694 (1966). See also Britton v. State, 631 So.2d 1073, 1078 (Ala.Cr.App. 1993); Williams v. State, 601 So.2d 1062, 1072 (Ala.Cr.App. 1991). The appellant's statement and the bloodstained clothes ...