Case summaries for Jan. 15 – 21, 2021
Reasonable Suspicion Was a Matter of Law
The inquiry on appeal is solely legal, and no deference is due the circuit court, when evidence is uncontested. To contest evidence, a party need not contradict that evidence, it can cross-examine or argue against the evidence’s credibility. Driver’s cross-examination of arresting officer challenged whether undisputed facts constituted reasonable suspicion that driver violated a law and supported a traffic stop. “[E]ven a minor traffic violation gives an officer probable cause to stop a vehicle.” Circuit court erred in suppressing evidence resulting from traffic stop that was based on a renewal sticker applied to expired license plates.
State of Missouri, Appellant, vs. Scott Allen Utech, Respondent.
Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District – ED108605