United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
957 F.2d 38 (1st Cir. 1992)
Officers Wheeler and Venditto were chasing Francisco Collado (defendant), seeking to arrest him. During the chase, Collado dropped a bag that contained packets of cocaine and heroin. Wheeler yelled at Venditto to pick up the bag and continued chasing Collado. Venditto picked up the bag and took it to the police station, where he filled out a seizure report and placed the bag in a seized-evidence safe maintained by the Special Investigations Bureau (SIB). Detective Purro of the SIB retrieved the seizure report and the bag from the safe the next day. The SIB conducted tests on the contents of the bag and held the bag until trial. Collado was charged with possession of cocaine and heroin with intent to distribute. The prosecution introduced the bag into evidence over Collado’s objection. Purro testified that the standard operating police procedure for evidence seized after hours was to fill out a seizure form and place the evidence in the safe. Collado was convicted. Collado appealed, arguing that the prosecution failed to properly authenticate the bag containing the drugs as the bag dropped by him during the chase.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Cyr, J.)
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