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Case Number: 4:22-CR-133
Judge: Brian S. Miller
Court: United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas (Pulaski County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office in Little Rock
Defendant's Attorney: Degen Clow
Description: Little Rock, Arkansas criminal defense lawyer represented the Defendant charged with felony possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(1).
May was arrested after leading police officers on a high speed chase when officers stopped him for having dim taillights. He is moving to suppress the items recovered from his car after the high speed chase. In support of his motion, he argues that his taillights were functioning properly and therefore the initial stop was an unlawful seizure.
May's motion is denied because the officers had probable cause to stop him for driving with dim taillights. See United States v. Coney, 456 F.3d 850, 856 (8th Cir. 2006); Ark. Code Ann. § 27-36-215 (requiring motor vehicles to be equipped with taillights that “emit a red light plainly visible from a distance of five hundred feet (500') to the rear”); Ex. 2, Dashcam Video, Doc. No. 35 (showing that May's taillights were noticeably dimmer than those of other vehicles). Moreover, the officers did not make contact with May until after he fled, so he was not seized during the initial stop. See Ex. 2, Dashcam Video; Atkinson v. City of Mt. View, Mo., 709 F.3d 1201, 1208 (8th Cir. 2013). Finally, when May fled from the police he provided additional probable cause to arrest him. Ark. Code Ann. § 5-54-125.
18:922(g)(1) Felon in Possession of a Firearm
Outcome: Motion to suppress denied.
Comments: Editor's Comment: This is but one example of how flimsy claims of probable cause can be.