United States v. Anthony Redman, No. 21-2581 (8th Cir. 2022)Annotate this Case
After the district court denied Defendant’s motion to suppress evidence, Redman pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm by a prohibited person in violation of 18 U.S.C. Sections 922(g)(1) and 924(a)(2). Defendant appealed, arguing that the arresting officer lacked reasonable suspicion to seize him and that evidence recovered after the seizure should have been suppressed.
The Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court’s judgment denying Defendant’s motion to suppress evidence. The court explained, during a Terry stop, an officer may “take such steps as [are] reasonably necessary to protect their personal safety and to maintain the status quo during the course of the stop,” including frisking a person for weapons if the officer has “articulable suspicion that the person is armed and dangerous.”
Here, the parties agree that Defendant was not seized until the officer physically grabbed his jacket. The court concluded that the officer had reasonable articulable suspicion to detain Defendant at that time. The officer was investigating an early-morning report of shots fired near 1:00 a.m. in a high-crime area. That he had been told that the call may have pertained to fireworks did not alone end his investigation, however. The officer knew that, among other facts, Defendant was one of only two people present in the dark parking lot that was the alleged location of the shots fired. Given these circumstances, the officer had reasonable suspicion that Defendant may have been involved in a shots fired incident, which justified his decision to seize Defendant and to perform a limited search to determine if Defendant was armed.