An investigator in plain clothes knocked on Wooden’s door. When Wooden answered the door, the investigator asked to speak with Wooden’s wife. Wooden indicated he would go get her. The investigator, who did not identify himself as a police officer, asked if he could wait inside where it was warm. Wooden consented and turned to go get his wife. As he went down the hall, he picked up a firearm. The investigator, who knew Wooden was a convicted felon, immediately placed Wooden under arrest.
Wooden sought to have the firearm excluded as the product of a Fourth Amendment violation. He argued that he did not give consent, but even if he did, the consent was obtained by deception that rendered the consent invalid. The main point of his argument was that the officer was in plain clothes and did not identify himself as a police officer. The Sixth Circuit disagreed, noting that the investigator did not do anything to deceive Wooden. The investigator was “silent as to his official position; he did not hold himself out to be anything he was not. He merely asked to speak to Harris and then asked if he could come inside, to get out of the cold.”
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