United States v. Beauchamp, No. 10-5102 (6th Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
After spotting defendant walking at 2:30 a.m. in an area that generates narcotics complaints, an officer ordered him to stop. He complied. Because defendant seemed nervous and was shaking, the officer frisked him and requested permission to search. Defendant agreed and the officer found $1,300 in cash. Defendant's pants had fallen to his thighs and, when the officer pulled out his boxers there was plastic sticking up between his butt cheeks. Defendant tried to run, but officers restrained him and discovered that the plastic contained cocaine. Following his plea of guilty to possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine, defendant appealed the district court's denial of a motion to suppress. The Sixth Circuit reversed, holding that the police seizure of defendant was neither consensual nor based on reasonable and articulable suspicion. The consent given to search was involuntary and did not purge the taint of the illegal seizure.