Oregon v. DavisAnnotate this Case
Defendant Robert Davis threatened and assaulted two people outside of a store, and two uniformed officers were dispatched to the area. When the officers arrived, one of them saw defendant walking away from a group of people. Believing that defendant was the perpetrator, the officer got out of his patrol car and identified himself as a police officer. Defendant ran away. The officer chased him and repeatedly yelled “Stop, police!” The other officer pursued defendant in his patrol car, activating its overhead emergency lights and siren. Defendant kept running and continued to run from the officers until they apprehended him. The state ultimately charged defendant with third-degree escape for fleeing from police after the officer commanded him to stop. The issue in this case was whether, in running from the police, defendant committed the criminal offense of third-degree escape. The statute that defined the offense requires proof that the defendant was in custody at the time of the escape. The trial court concluded that the police, in shouting for defendant to stop, had effectively placed him in “constructive custody.” The Court of Appeals agreed, affirming without a written opinion. After review, the Oregon Supreme Court concluded that police merely shouting for another person to stop does not place that person in custody for the purposes of establishing third-degree escape.