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State v. Peterson

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 11-06-2013
Case #: A146017
Sercombe, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Haselton, C.J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A146017.pdf

Criminal Procedure: Determining whether a stop has been unlawfully extended is done by a totality of the circumstances analysis.

Defendant appeals his convictions for delivery of heroin constituting a commercial drug offense, and possession of heroin, arguing that the trial court improperly denied his motion to suppress evidence. Officer stopped Defendant for running a red light. Officer asked on multiple occasions for consent to search the car based on a previous encounter with Defendant. Defendant’s car was blocked from leaving by the patrol car Defendant said nothing to Officer’s offer to move it. Officer then asked if the car belonged to Defendant, and from Defendant’s responses, Officer determined Defendant’s insurance card to be false. Officer arrested Defendant for knowingly giving an officer false information about liability insurance and, incident to that arrest, searched Defendant, discovering heroin. Defendant moved to suppress that evidence at trial, contending that Officer unlawfully extended the traffic stop when he asked about the ownership of the car, and repeatedly requested to search car while Defendant's car was blocked. The Court of Appeals concluded that the trial court erred by denying Defendant's motion to suppress. Under the totality of the circumstances, Defendant was unlawfully seized, and the challenged evidence was a product of that unlawful seizure. Reversed and remanded.