Idaho v. RayAnnotate this Case
The issue on appeal before the Supreme Court pertained to an order suppressing evidence. A law enforcement officer following two vehicles turned on the overhead lights of his patrol car in order to pull over the lead vehicle. Both vehicles pulled over, and the officer parked his car behind the lead vehicle and several car lengths in front of the rear vehicle. When the officer got out of his car, he walked back to the rear vehicle to tell the driver he was only stopping the lead vehicle. The district court held that by walking towards the rear vehicle, the officer seized its occupants without a reasonable, articulable suspicion that they had violated any law. The Supreme Court reversed: when approaching the rear vehicle, the trooper did not draw his gun or make any hand gestures indicating that the vehicle should not leave, nor did he even shine his flashlight at it. Considering the totality of the circumstances in this case, the trooper did not seize the rear vehicle by walking up to the driver's door. His actions certainly indicated that he wanted to talk to the driver, but the Supreme Court concluded that did not constitute a seizure.