Alan Borkowski, Criminal Procedures CJ227, September 12, 2012|
I believe that officer Smith did have every reason to pull over the car in question because there was not only the appearance of a broken tail light that had been taped up but also the car resembled a vehicle that had been used in the commission of another crime, that being the road side killing of another officer. Officer Smith’s observation that the vehicle may be the one in question from the killing of the other officer, she has every right to ask the occupant of the car to get out for a pat down for not only her safety but the safety of any others. Even though the woman didn’t have any weapons on her the officer didn’t know and that’s why she requested the pat down. Had the woman been carrying any weapons when the officer approached the car the officers life would have been in immediate danger so the officer error on the side of caution and did the right thing with the pat down. This is where the situation gets interesting the officer should have kept the occupant of the car out and instructed her toward the front or rear of the vehicle, but instead she allowed her to get into the car and then the officer asked for her identification. The officer should have asked for identification from the beginning. As soon as the officer walked up alongside of the car and instructed the occupant to get out, the officer should have also asked for identification and since the woman didn’t have it on her person and it was left in the car, the officer should have asked for permission to obtain it from the inside of the car. The officer was at fault for letting the woman back inside of the vehicle and as a result the woman speed off which ended up in a dangerous high speed chase between the officer and woman and ultimately that resulted in the suspect’s car striking a telephone pole and crashing. It is interesting to determine whether...