Skip to content
Name: United States v. Charley
Case #: 03-10579
Court: US Court of Appeals
District 9 Cir
Opinion Date: 12/07/2004

Appellant shot three of her six children. She then called police, and told them they needed to check on her children. Police met her at a relative’s home, and brought appellant to her own home to check on the children. Appellant told officers that she had done something very bad, and that they were going to have to put her away for a long time. She told an EMT that she had killed the children. Appellant was told she was not under arrest at the time she was taken to her home. After the children were found dead, officers gave appellant Miranda warnings and questioned her further. She made several statements and confessed to killing the children. On appeal, she argued that the earlier statements should have been suppressed as the fruits of an illegal arrest. The appellate court disagreed. Appellant was not in custody when the officers detained her at the relative’s home and brought her to her own home to investigate. Appellant voluntarily accompanied the officers, and, in fact, had asked them to check on the children. She was not in custody until officers found the dead children in her home. Further, the district court properly denied appellant’s motion to suppress her later statements because she had not invoked her Fifth Amendment right to counsel, and her Sixth Amendment right to counsel had not yet attached because she made the request for an attorney before the tribal court. The Sixth Amendment right to counsel does not apply in tribal court criminal proceedings.