DEVON K. HARGRAVES, Defendant Below, Appellant,
STATE OF DELAWARE, Plaintiff Below, Appellee.
Submitted: April 19, 2018
Below: Superior Court of the State of Delaware Cr. ID No.
STRINE, Chief Justice; VALIHURA and VAUGHN, Justices.
L. VALIHURA, JUSTICE.
This is the appellant's direct appeal from his conviction
and sentencing in the Superior Court. Having considered the
no-merit brief and motion to withdraw submitted by the
appellant's counsel under Supreme Court Rule 26(c), the
State's response, and the Superior Court record, it
appears to the Court that:
appellant, Devon Hargraves, was indicted on charges of
Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited, Possession of
Ammunition by a Person Prohibited, Carrying a Concealed
Deadly Weapon, Discharge of a Firearm on a Street, Criminal
Mischief, and Resisting Arrest. Prior to trial,
Hargraves' trial counsel filed a motion to suppress the
evidence as illegally seized from an illegal stop. The
Superior Court held an evidentiary hearing and, on September
22, 2017, issued a memorandum order denying the motion
suppress. A copy of the Superior Court's order is
attached here for reference.
After the denial of the motion to suppress, Hargraves'
case proceeded to a bench trial. On September 26, 2017, the
Superior Court found Hargraves guilty of Possession of a
Firearm by a Person Prohibited, Carrying a Concealed Deadly
Weapon, and Resisting Arrest, and sentenced him to a total of
twenty-four years at Level V suspended after five years for
ten years of Level IV supervision suspended after six months
for concurrent Level III supervision and monitoring.
Hargraves' counsel on appeal has filed a no-merit brief
under Rule 26(c) and a corresponding motion to withdraw.
Hargraves has submitted written points, which are included in
the brief. In his points, Hargraves contends that he was
illegally stopped by the police and that the evidence seized
as a result of that illegal stop-chiefly, a handgun from the
waistband of his pants-should have been suppressed. The State
has responded to Hargraves' points, the position taken by
his appellate counsel, and has moved to affirm the Superior
When reviewing the denial of a motion to suppress evidence
based on an allegedly illegal stop, we conduct a de novo
review "to determine whether the totality of the
circumstances, in light of the trial judge's factual
findings, support a reasonable and articulable suspicion for
the stop." In this case, having conducted the
required de novo review, we conclude that the totality of the
circumstances, as determined by the Superior Court in its
thorough and well-reasoned order denying the motion to
suppress, supports the legal conclusion that the responding
police officer had reasonable and articulable suspicion to
When considering a Rule 26(c) brief and an accompanying
motion to withdraw, we must be satisfied that the
appellant's counsel has made a conscientious examination
of the record and the law for claims that could arguably
support the appeal. Also, we must conduct our own review of
the record to determine whether the appeal is so totally
devoid of at least arguably appealable issues that it can be
decided without an adversary presentation.
this case, we have reviewed the record and concluded that
Hargraves's appeal is '"wholly without
merit." We are satisfied that Hargraves'
appellate counsel made a conscientious effort to examine the
record and the law and properly determined that Hargraves
could not raise a meritorious claim on appeal. The points
raised by Hargraves on appeal were raised in the motion to
suppress and argued by his trial counsel at the evidentiary
hearing. The Superior Court's memorandum order of
September 22, 2017, denying the motion to suppress, is
affirmed on appeal.
THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED that the State's motion to
affirm is GRANTED. The judgments of the Superior Court are
AFFIRMED. The motion to withdraw is moot.
THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE
K. HARGRAVES Defendant.
ORDER DENYING MOTION TO SUPPRESS
consideration of the Motion to Suppress Evidence (the
"Motion") filed by Defendant Devon K. Hargraves on
August 7, 2017; the State's Response to Defendant's
Motion to Suppress (the "Response") filed by the
State of Delaware on September 1, 2017; the evidence provided
by the parties at a hearing held on September 11, 2017 (the
"Hearing"); the arguments made on the Motion and
Response by the parties at the Hearing; and for the reasons
set forth below, the Motion is DENIED.
a criminal action. The State has charged Mr. Hargraves with a
possession of a firearm by a person prohibited case. On April
23, 2017, persons contacted the Wilmington Police Department
("WPD"), through several 911 calls, regarding shots
fired in the area of North Van Buren Street. Corporal Donald
Cramer responded to the area. After arriving, Corporal Cramer
attempted to stop Mr. Hargraves, who matched the description
of two 911 callers. After several commands to stop, Mr.
Hargraves fled from Corporal Cramer. WPD apprehended Mr.
Hargraves and found a firearm in Mr. Hargraves'
Hargraves filed the Motion to suppress the gun found on his
person arguing (i) that Corporal Cramer seized Mr. Hargraves
at the point Corporal Cramer exited his police vehicle and
told Mr. Hargraves to stop; and (ii) Corporal Cramer did not