Thursday, July 26, 2007

How long did California DUI Officer Detain You?

California DUI Attorney case: Prolonged Detention Results in Suppression of Evidence

In a recent case which should help California DUI Lawyers, a man was stopped by a police officer who made a pretextual stop based on his trailer hitch ball purportedly blocking vehicle's license plate. The stop was made to investigate his drug suspicion. Officer asks for and receives license and registration.

Officer conducted status check for warrants and information. While officer waited for dispatch to respond, he asked driver if he would "step out and speak to me."

Officer then interrogated driver for 5 to 10 more minutes. Then asked for consent to search vehicle. Driver gave consent.

When officer found nothing, he asked driver for consent to search his person for drugs or weapons. Driver consented and drugs found.

Court of Appeal correctly applied rationale of People v. McGaughran (1979) 25 Cal.3d 577 and other cases, and distinguishing unrelated case law, thereby suppressing the evidence for this prolonged detention. [People v. Deleon (H029563, Sixth Appellate Dist., 4/2/07]