OUR
BLOG
Call Us: (312) 655-7660

Appellate Court closely scrutinizing police-citizen encounters

Appellate Court closely scrutinizing police-citizen encounters

Illinois appellate courts appear to be taking a more narrow approach to Terry stops vis a vis consensual encounters. In two recent decisions, the Court concluded that the police officers’ actions “compelled compliance” of a citizen and rendered the stops illegal as violative of the fourth amendment. In  People v. Santovi, 2014 IL App (2d) 130075 (May 27, 2014), the Appellate Court concluded that the District Court properly granted Defendant’s petition to rescind statutory summary suspension, as officer made illegal arrest when officer threatened to kick bathroom door down. Officer’s statement compelled compliance and made clear that Defendant was not at liberty to ignore officer’s request. A reasonable person would not believe she was free to deny officer’s demand or end encounter with police. Thus, conduct was an arrest for Fourth Amendment purposes. Hot pursuit exception is inapplicable, as arrest was not initiated in public, and Defendant was not fleeing from police. Read full case

In the case of In re Rafeal E., 2014 IL App (1st) 133027 (May 16, 2014), the Appellate Court reversed the District Court wherein a minor was adjudicated delinquent for possession of heroin and cocaine. Minor’s encounter with police in alley was a Terry stop, not a consensual encounter. Two officers in a marked squad car pulled up alongside minor, who was walking briskly, and ordered him to stop walking and made two consecutive orders for him to take his hands out of his pockets. A reasonable person would have believed that compliance might be compelled, and officer’s orders were a show of authority. No evidence was presented that police suspected minor of committing any narcotics transactions. As police did not have valid justification for seizing minor, court erred in denying minor’s motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence (plastic bag with drugs found in minor’s waistband).  Read full case

Back
Sign Up for Newsletter
Keep current with relevant laws as they change