A Terry stop with reasonable suspicion leads to the search of a vehicle under Automobile Exception with probable cause.
A road rage incident results in the defendant being detained and then frisked. The odor of marijuana leads to the search of the defendant’s car resulting in the discovery of firearms and 400 grams of marijuana. The Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court’s denial of defendant’s motion to suppress evidence obtained from the search of his vehicle. The court held that the officers lawfully continued their investigation after they determined the defendant was not carrying a gun because, during the pat-down, the defendant admitted that he had threatened to shoot a woman. In this case, the officers’ request for the defendant’s identification was a reasonable and lawful extension of their initial investigatory stop. The court also held that the officers then had probable cause to search the defendant’s vehicle because one of the officers smelled marijuana when the defendant opened the car door.
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