State v. Hogan, 234 N.C. App. 218 (Jun. 3, 2014)

The defendant’s statements, made while a police officer who responded to a domestic violence scene questioned the defendant’s girlfriend, were spontaneous and in not response to interrogation. The State conceded that the defendant was in custody at the time. The court rejected the defendant’s argument that asking his girlfriend what happened in front of him was a coercive technique designed to elicit an incriminating statement. Conceding that the “case is a close one,” the court concluded that the officer’s question to the girlfriend did not constitute the functional equivalent of questioning because the officer’s question did not call for a response from the defendant and therefore was not reasonably likely to elicit an incriminating response from him.