Recent Court Decisions

By Petrocelli, Joseph | Law & Order, July 2005 | Go to article overview

Recent Court Decisions


Petrocelli, Joseph, Law & Order


Pertaining to Vehicle Searches During Motor Vehicle Stops

Officers are well served in remaining topical about decisions from courts pertaining to vehicle stops and searches. Recently, two decisions pertaining to vehicle searches were handed down at the Circuit Court level. Although an officer may work outside of the jurisdiction of the court rendering the decision, the decisions are still helpful in gauging how the court views different searches.

US v Wallen was decided October 11, 2004 by the 5th Circuit Court. A police officer in Texas had conducted a motor vehicle stop for speeding. Upon approaching the vehicle the officer noted two rifles on the passenger side of the truck. The vehicle operator advised his credentials were in a wallet on the passenger side of the truck and had to exit the vehicle and walk around to the other side. The officer noted the subject was barefoot.

As the operator moved items to locate his wallet, the officer observed a pistol in plain view. He ordered the operator away from the vehicle and directed him to stand at the rear of the truck.

The officer conducted a background check by radio. Twice during this process the operator attempted to access the truck's interior and had to be ordered to remain at the rear of the truck. Upon being advised of an outstanding warrant from another county, the vehicle operator was handcuffed and placed in the rear of the patrol unit. At this time, the defendant was advised he was only being temporarily detained pending a check on the validity of the warrant.

The officer undertook a search of the truck's interior. This search revealed an unregistered short barrel rifle and an unregistered fully automatic rifle. During the course of this search, the officer was advised the warrant could not be executed from his jurisdiction. The defendant was placed under arrest on the weapons charges. Subsequent investigation revealed an unregistered silencer.

At the trial court level the evidence (weapons) was suppressed. The trial court reasoned the search was unnecessary because the defendant was handcuffed and secured, and therefore was not dangerous.

Using the logic from Terry v Ohio (1968), the Circuit Court found the Texas officer had "an articulable and objectively reasonable belief that the suspect is potentially dangerous." The court noted the suspect was "suspiciously barefoot" at night and had twice attempted to gain access to the truck's interior over the order's of the officer.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Recent Court Decisions
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.