United States v. McGregor, No. 09-2650 (1st Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
After gang-member shooting victims were taken to the hospital, police officers watching the emergency room entrance, observed the defendant and another known gang member leaving. They followed and pulled over the speeding car. Believing the occupants to be acting "nervous" and to have a gun, the officers conducted a thorough search of the car and found a gun and crack cocaine hidden in an access panel. A second search, by an expert familiar with "hides," revealed ammunition. Defendant entered a conditional plea of guilty as a felon in possession (18 U.S.C. 922(g)). The district court denied a motion to suppress and sentenced defendant to 188 months incarceration. The First Circuit affirmed. The officers had reasonable suspicion, the five-minute duration of the search before the gun was found was reasonable, and the scope of the search, including the easily accessible hidden compartment, was reasonable.