Monday, August 06, 2012

Officer's estimate of speed sufficient to support traffic stop

U.S. v. Swan, 2012 WL 2763662 (7/10/12) (Okl.) (unpub'd) - There was reasonable suspicion to stop a car for a speeding violation based solely on the officer's visual estimate of the car's speed. The officer was a veteran officer with substantial experience estimating speed and the d. ct. found him credible. Strangely, in support of its decision, the 10th notes the trial jury believed the officer regarding different matters. The d. ct. did not abuse its discretion when it admitted the defendant's post-arrest, on-the-scene statement that he would shoot the officers. The statement was accompanied by a gesture similar to pulling a trigger. The evidence showed the defendant's consciousness of guilt because he threatened prosecution witnesses. The trigger gesture showed his intent to possess the firearm that was found.