NYPD Officer Pickel was patrolling an area known for violent crime, when a man flagged him down, pointing to the only pedestrian on a bridge (later identified as Torres). The man stated that Torres fired a gun into an old factory across the street. Officer Pickel radioed for backup and followed Torres in his car, believing that Torres posed a potential danger to others and that any delay would make it difficult to locate Torres. As other officers arrived, Officer Pickel activated his emergency lights, exited his patrol car, drew his service pistol, and ordered Torres to “get to the ground.” Torres complied. Officer Hatterer knelt and asked Torres if he had a firearm. According to Officer Hatterer, Torres indicated that it was in his right pocket. Officer Hatterer handcuffed Torres; another officer retrieved the firearm. The district court denied a motion to suppress, reasoning that the gun was found during a constitutional “Terry” Stop rather than during an arrest and that Officer Pickel had the requisite reasonable suspicion. The Third Circuit affirmed.
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