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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 2/21/2006 11:44:29 AM EDT
We have a trailer at a local trailer park that we are suspect of selling drugs from. We are starting to get some intel and almost have PC for a warrant. Last nite i followed a truck that was going to turn into the driveway of teh drug house, but didnt. Truck circled around and waited for me to leave, I hid down the street and then watched it go to the house, driver was in and out and left. No defects on truck, occupied 3x's, operations fine, no speeding. Well in the driveway of the house is a car that was involved in a drug warrant, and another car i stopped yestarday and searched it and found drugs. Well based on this I called my Sgt. and he told me to stop the vehicle. I did and got some drugs from the car. My question is, do you think it was articuable suspicion to stop teh car or not. My sgt. thought it was, so he told me to stop it. What do you think?

Be Safe
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 11:54:20 AM EDT
Bottom line is you got some drugs off the street and made life inconvienet for some shit bags.

Way I see it

Winner
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 12:05:39 PM EDT
yeah and I have a feeling there are a lot coming from that house.

I am glad I had my k-9, made finding it easier and as soon as the guys saw my dog, the were cooperative
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 2:40:17 PM EDT
Hmm...
(Prepare for convoluted answer and a poor sentence)
I'm inclined to think that because you know it is a suspected drug house coupled with your training and experience as a law enforcement officer in regards to how people purchasing drugs behave, it was reasonable to conduct an investigatory stop on that vehicle. This is because you can articulate your reasonable suspicion that a crime was in progress (the possession and transport of dangerous drugs) and had just been committed and there would be evidence of that crime in that vehicle (distribution of dangerous drugs).

On top of that this stop will add to the warrant as drugs were siezed from the vehicle and there is reason to believe that the drugs in the vehicle originated from that house.

Just my take on it, could be interpreting that wrong. If you do a good job on your report and your Sgt backs you up because he told you to stop the car you should be fine.
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 3:35:55 PM EDT
Did you get a warrant for the house? I'd use that as my PC and go get a warrant for the house. Based on what you told me, I think that there is more than enough for a warrant.
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 4:41:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ColtRifle:
Did you get a warrant for the house? I'd use that as my PC and go get a warrant for the house. Based on what you told me, I think that there is more than enough for a warrant.



Looks like we will be doing a search warrant on the house ASAP. Possibly this evening. I will keep you posted
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 5:32:30 PM EDT
just curious, what kind of drugs?


and as a complete non leo, who thinks some things should be legalized, considering the laws as they stand, I think what you did was legit.

txl
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 7:10:05 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TxLewis:
just curious, what kind of drugs?


and as a complete non leo, who thinks some things should be legalized, considering the laws as they stand, I think what you did was legit.

txl



They were oxy's and also got some marijuana out of the car
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 9:40:07 PM EDT
A truck goes to a house that you have been watching for dope. You do not yet have Probable Cause to believe drugs are in the house. You see another car in the driveway that was previously linked to dope. You then see the truck drive away. What leads you to believe that drugs are in the truck at that particular time?

How does the fact that a truck leaves a house where you suspect drugs, but have no PC, lead you to the Reasonable Suspicion (not Articulable Suspicion) that drugs are in the truck at that moment? If that is true, then we can stop anyone that leaves any house where we suspect drugs. It seems weak to me at best.

On a further note, if you use information from the traffic stop as PC to get into the house and the traffic stop is later ruled as illegal, then you probably lose the PC for the warrant at the house. That is unless you have enough information in the warrant affidavit to overcome the need for the vehicle stop as PC.

I am glad you got the dope and hope the scum goes to jail. I just seems more like a hunch or mere suspicion that the truck had drugs at that time. Maybe he will get a court appointed attorney and make it easy.

Link Posted: 2/21/2006 10:08:40 PM EDT
Yeah and your point is? So what if you stop the truck and it doesn't have any drugs? So what, no one gets arrested and you move on. What I would do is make a buyer flip on the dealer, ever heard of a John/Jane doe warrant? You don't let the buyer go but you let the states Atty know he helped after the warrant is positive. Or start doing surveillance on the house, take binnoculars and get out of the car, you see hand to hand transactions and you have your partners make a stop on the car. When you have at least three positive stops it's time to move in on the dealer, no warrant needed.Now bust some dealers.
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 10:36:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CRNUMBER:
Yeah and your point is? So what if you stop the truck and it doesn't have any drugs? So what, no one gets arrested and you move on.



Are you suggesting to make illegal stops and if you find drugs good, if not move on? LEO916's question was about the legality of the stop. I think it was borderline at best.


What I would do is make a buyer flip on the dealer, ever heard of a John/Jane doe warrant? You don't let the buyer go but you let the states Atty know he helped after the warrant is positive. Or start doing surveillance on the house, take binnoculars and get out of the car, you see hand to hand transactions and you have your partners make a stop on the car.


Yes, I have written warrants. Seeing a hand to hand transaction is great. LEO916 did not describe a hand to hand deal, he saw a truck leave a house that he suspected might have had drugs, nothing more.


Now bust some dealers.


I do it all the time.
Link Posted: 2/21/2006 11:04:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By tvc184:
. LEO916 did not describe a hand to hand deal, he saw a truck leave a house that he suspected might have had drugs, nothing more.



You musta missed the part where the truck circled (avoided the house) until the very visible police car was out of the area (hidden).
Link Posted: 2/22/2006 8:13:44 AM EDT
You can make the stop based on reasonable suspicion and on your trainign and experience. You are allowed to conduct the stop in order to develop/investigate for probable cause based upon the scenario you have given.

I would do it.
Link Posted: 2/22/2006 9:05:28 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/22/2006 9:08:33 AM EDT by Citabria7GCBC]

Originally Posted By LEO916:
yeah and I have a feeling there are a lot coming from that house.

I am glad I had my k-9, made finding it easier and as soon as the guys saw my dog, the were cooperative




I could be mistaken but I belive they told us in the academy down here, that if a k9 hits on a vehicle when its stopped then its pc to search the car. Not sure how, but if i remeber correctly thats what they said.

You could articulate how you did have reasonable suspicion to stop the vehicle


ETA: also down here in tx the traffic codes specifies that we can stop a vehicle for the sole purpose of making sure the driver has a drivers license. Not sure if ya'll have something similar or not, but its possible.

If the above could be used then your dog "alerts" on the car or its in plain view. BAM you got'em.
If it turns out he has no DL BAM you got him, "inventory" the vehicle and find drugs. BAM you got him again.
Link Posted: 2/22/2006 9:18:06 AM EDT
UPDATE:

spoke with local DA, says it was enough for a stop for these reasons: avoided the house when I was behind him, due to my experience i recognized a in and out stop like the guy made is common with buying drugs, there was a vehicle in the driveway linked with a previous drug raid, and another vehicle in the driveway that i stopped and got drugs out of earlier, and b/c we have some reliable intel on the trailer

We did do a warrant on the house last nite. You think after we stopped this guy and got drugs they would have dumped the stuff. Due to this still bein an ongoing investigation I cant give to many specifics, but we found a meth lab, lots of marijuana, some oxy's, and rock cocaine
Link Posted: 2/22/2006 12:02:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Citabria7GCBC:

I could be mistaken but I belive they told us in the academy down here, that if a k9 hits on a vehicle when its stopped then its pc to search the car.

ETA: also down here in tx the traffic codes specifies that we can stop a vehicle for the sole purpose of making sure the driver has a drivers license. Not sure if ya'll have something similar or not, but its possible.

If the above could be used then your dog "alerts" on the car or its in plain view. BAM you got'em.
If it turns out he has no DL BAM you got him, "inventory" the vehicle and find drugs. BAM you got him again.



Yes, a dog can be PC for a search. The issue is the reasonable suspicion for the stop, not the dog.

You could also search the wingspan/passenger compartment incident to a lawful arrest if you can find a traffic charge (other than speeding) and arrest him.

Yes, Texas law says you can about stop anyone you want, whenever they are driving just to check their driver's license. It basically does away with reasonable suspicion as long as you are driving on a public road. I am curious if it has ever been contested in an appeals court. I have my doubts if that will stand up under a 4th Amendment stop/seizure. Texas still has a law on the books that says homosexual conduct is illegal and that has been ruled unconstitutional.
§ 521.025. LICENSE TO BE CARRIED AND EXHIBITED ON DEMAND; CRIMINAL PENALTY. (a) A person required to hold a license under Section 521.021 shall:
(1) have in the person's possession while operating a motor vehicle the class of driver's license appropriate for the type of vehicle operated; and
(2) display the license on the demand of a magistrate, court officer, or peace officer.
(b) A peace officer may stop and detain a person operating a motor vehicle to determine if the person has a driver's license as required by this section.


Yes, AZ-K9, I did read the part about circling the block. As I said in my previous posts, I think that it is a borderline case but I never said it was illegal or improper. I still think it is borderline but his DA thinks it fell on the side of being within the law so it is a great piece of police work.
Link Posted: 2/22/2006 1:26:49 PM EDT
Totality of the Circumstances.... sounds good to me.
Link Posted: 2/23/2006 2:07:22 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AJE:
Totality of the Circumstances.... sounds good to me.



Same here, although it would stand a good chance of getting thrown out here.
Link Posted: 2/23/2006 4:04:07 PM EDT
I finally decided to post my comments... BAD STOP.

All professional LEO's know that a traffic stop MUST be based on one of two things (DUI/Roadblocks the exception):

1) A crime and/or violation has occurred and/or

2) There is REASONABLE SUSPICION to believe that a crime HAS BEEN, IS GOING TO BE, or HAS BEEN committed (suspect is in vehicle, etc).

First off, ASSOCIATION ALONE with criminals or being in a HIGH CRIME area in and of itself IS NOT reasonable suspicion or probable cause.... It's called "gut feeling" or a "hunch" and again, all professional LEO's already know what the courts have said about those issues. Therefore, simply because the truck went to "THE HOUSE", given your known issues with the house, MEANS NOTHING.

Second, what law did the truck violate by pulling off and waiting... none. To you it seemed suspicious because YOU ASSUMED he/she was waiting for you to leave so he/she could go there without being seen to get narcotics. What articulable fact can you offer to support this??

You and I both know what was going on BUT the general public (JURY, hint, hint) does not. It is the general public (that damn Jury thing again) that will want to know WHY you felt that you KNEW what you THOUGHT you KNEW.

Maybe the driver was trying to finish a sandwich and did not want to be rude and show up with food without enough to share... Maybe the driver had a killer fart brewing and did not want to stink up his buddies house... Maybe he/she had to stop and count out 50 $1 bills to pay a debt... Maybe he/she saw you and just simply did not want you to know where they were going... It does not matter because you ASSUMED there was a specific reason why they appeared to stall.

You simply had what we all get in this job, a case of knowing something that we can't prove in court... and that was "the fact that the folks were there to get dope". You knew before you called the SGT that you needed MORE for a lawful stop yet you decided to drag the SGT in on it to get the "go ahead". Not a good habit to get into. You have been trained and schooled on the law, I submit to you you knew the stop was illegal.

I submit to you that ANY 1/2 ass decent lawyer will have the stop deemed illegal and all evidence lost at a suppression hearing.

DON'T GET ME WRONG... I love to break it off in John Q. Criminals ass every chance I get but I also know my actions will be under fire IF CHALLENGED BY A GOOD LAWYER. I get more than my fair share of dope arrests but Guys/Gals... WE GOT TO DO IT BY THE BOOK!! This is the kind of stuff that generates BS case law, and BS case law gets in our way.

Keep us informed, but I feel STRONGLY that if challenged, you will lose everthing on the stop.

Link Posted: 2/23/2006 11:08:59 PM EDT
Bowhntr6pt according to the DA he seems to think it was enough for a stop and he is going to pursue it.

We did do a warrant on the house the other day, details in an earlier post.

I will let you know how the case goes.

Personally i didnt think i had enough, but my sgt. told me to make the stop cuz he believed I did.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 2:42:32 AM EDT
Bowhntr6pt,

"2) There is REASONABLE SUSPICION to believe that a crime HAS BEEN, IS GOING TO BE, or HAS BEEN committed (suspect is in vehicle, etc).

First off, ASSOCIATION ALONE with criminals or being in a HIGH CRIME area in and of itself IS NOT reasonable suspicion or probable cause.... It's called "gut feeling" or a "hunch" and again, all professional LEO's already know what the courts have said about those issues. Therefore, simply because the truck went to "THE HOUSE", given your known issues with the house, MEANS NOTHING. "

He had intel that they were dealing or had drugs at the residence. The vehicle acted in a suspicious manor approaching the residence. The lenght of time at residence was consistant with a drug transaction per training/experince.

I don't think there is enough there for an auto seach of the truck, but there is enough there to stop the truck and talk to the driver.

Also there is case law from the Supreme Court, documented high crime area, person walking sees cop cars and runs. The officers see this and do the "guy sees police and runs for no apparent reason in a documented hight crime area, is up to no good" They chase him down and get a gun or drugs off of him, don't remember which. Was ruled a good stop/search.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 3:16:34 AM EDT
Look into your traffic law more. I am sure there is something.

In TX you have to signal 100' continuously before turn. No one ever does that. Find something like that.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 3:47:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2006 4:08:28 AM EDT by Bowhntr6pt]

Originally Posted By Patrol_Jason:
Bowhntr6pt,

"2) There is REASONABLE SUSPICION to believe that a crime HAS BEEN, IS GOING TO BE, or HAS BEEN committed (suspect is in vehicle, etc).

First off, ASSOCIATION ALONE with criminals or being in a HIGH CRIME area in and of itself IS NOT reasonable suspicion or probable cause.... It's called "gut feeling" or a "hunch" and again, all professional LEO's already know what the courts have said about those issues. Therefore, simply because the truck went to "THE HOUSE", given your known issues with the house, MEANS NOTHING. "

He had intel that they were dealing or had drugs at the residence. The vehicle acted in a suspicious manor approaching the residence. The lenght of time at residence was consistant with a drug transaction per training/experince.

I don't think there is enough there for an auto seach of the truck, but there is enough there to stop the truck and talk to the driver.

Also there is case law from the Supreme Court, documented high crime area, person walking sees cop cars and runs. The officers see this and do the "guy sees police and runs for no apparent reason in a documented hight crime area, is up to no good" They chase him down and get a gun or drugs off of him, don't remember which. Was ruled a good stop/search.



Actually, courts have started to get away from the "High Crime Area" theme to some degree when there is little more additional circumstances or facts as almost all areas of our society are areas of criminal activity of one degree or another. People vs Nieto is a case from CA I believe that addresses this issue but required a Combination of several factors to support PC.

As far as association with known criminals... In United States vs Di Re the US Supreme Court ruled that this issue could be used to CONSIDER developing PC but again, it requires more.

The bottom line in my opinion is like jadams951 said above... find a "stand alone" reason to stop these folks and it will make for a much better case.

I hope the DA is good at what he/she does because I see an uphill battle. It's not an out-an-out BAD STOP where you intentionally and knowingly violated someones rights, but it is "rice paper thin" and open to too much debate. This kind of case gives too much to the courts in the way of further regulating what we can and can not do via case law.

Remember, courts can always EXTEND MORE PROTCTIONS, they just can't reduce protections... that's the problem with these type of cases. PLEASE keep me informed.



Link Posted: 2/24/2006 3:51:04 AM EDT

Originally Posted By LEO916:
Personally i didnt think i had enough, but my sgt. told me to make the stop cuz he believed I did.




In court or at a deposition, you will need to be able to defend the reason(s) why you stopped the vehicle. DO NOT get on the stand and say I stopped the vehicle because my SGT said to...........
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 6:07:31 AM EDT
On the topic of not being able to find a reason to stop a car maybe the IL vehicle code is vastly different from wherever you work, but if I follow someone long enough and I want them bad enough I will find a reason. If all else fails try the drift over the centerline trick. If your bad guy is watching you in his rearview nine times out of ten he will drift also and there you go. Also, if he suddenly pulls over to avoid you, depending on where you are, what time of day it is, and where his plates come back to he may be giving you a gift. Call it as a 10-37 instead of a 10-38 and go from there-you don't need nearly as much for a "suspicious vehicle". It is a lot easier to explain that you saw a vehicle pull into the driveway of an abandoned house, closed business, etc and found it out of the ordinary-maybe you were just checking on their welfare. Just remember, it's all about being able to put it on paper so the average Joe can understand your actions.

Stay safe.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 6:28:14 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2006 6:33:53 AM EDT by Bowhntr6pt]

Originally Posted By Patrol_Jason:

Also there is case law from the Supreme Court, documented high crime area, person walking sees cop cars and runs. The officers see this and do the "guy sees police and runs for no apparent reason in a documented hight crime area, is up to no good" They chase him down and get a gun or drugs off of him, don't remember which. Was ruled a good stop/search.




Wadrlow v. Illinois, 528 U.S. 119 (2000) is the case you are referring to. This situation/traffic stop lacks the ELEMENT of flight.

ETA: The fact that the truck appeared to stall when approaching the house is weak when standing alone. It would have been of great benefit if the vehicle/passengers had done one or more of the following in addition to simply stopping:

Turned off the lights
Passengers crouched down
Vehicle increased speed and took flight
Vehicle drove behind building/house
Vehicle made several "passes" before stopping
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 6:35:39 AM EDT
Although Bowhuntr6pt makes some good points I think this was more than enough RAS here to make a stop. Basicially you made a Terry stop. You had RAS to believe a drug crime was going to be committed or was committed. I would go so far as to say that you owuld have had enough RAS to search the car if you didnt have a K-9.

Good stop and good grab
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 12:12:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By justice23:
..............................You had RAS to believe a drug crime was going to be committed or was committed. I would go so far as to say that you owuld have had enough RAS to search the car if you didnt have a K-9.

Good stop and good grab



I am guessing that RAS is Reasonable Articulable Suspicion or something similar. Maybe you didn't type what you meant by "I would go so far as to say that you owuld have had enough RAS to search the car ". Surely you meant that he had enough PC for a search. I hope you don't think RS (RAS?) is enough for a forced search.

Obviously I am not talking about the exceptions to a PC search such as incident to lawful arrest, vehicle inventory, consent, plain view, etc.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 2:38:07 PM EDT
If you reasonably believed that the person had just purchased drugs from the suspected or known drug house it's a good stop, you can do a terry stop on the person/vehicle or whats in hands reach inside the vehicle. You can also call for a dog to sniff out drugs concealled in the vehicle. This stop doesn't have to be about traffic violations at all.
Link Posted: 2/24/2006 2:41:00 PM EDT
And might I add good job on the warrant.
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