Commonwealth v. CorderoAnnotate this Case
Once a police officer has completed the investigation of a defendant’s civil traffic violations and the facts do not give rise to reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, the officer is required to permit the defendant to drive away.
Defendant filed a motion to suppress evidence seized from the trunk of his vehicle, arguing that state police troopers and local police officers unreasonably detained him beyond the time required to effectuate a traffic stop. A superior court denied the motion to suppress. The Supreme Judicial Court reversed, holding that because the officer’s investigation of civil traffic violations did not give rise to reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, the officer did not have a legitimate basis to justify his investigation of criminal drug activity, and Defendant should have been allowed to drive away.