A term that arises in Criminal defense cases is the term of reasonable suspicion. Reasonable suspicion is defined as the reasonably justified suspicion of a police officer, to assume that a person has recently committed a crime, currently committing a crime, or intending to commit a crime. Reasonable suspicion allows an officer to briefly detain a suspect and pat down the outer layer of their clothing for weapons. defending dui cases Reasonable suspicion differs from probable cause, as reasonable suspicion is used to prevent crime and keep the officers and area safe from possible crime. Unlike probable cause, reasonable suspicion does not allow police officers to search for other items other than weapons. However, in some instances, if other items are found during a pat down, such as drugs, probable cause can then be created to search.
Reasonable suspicion as defined in criminal defense cases must be present before an officer can claim that he has probable cause to arrest someone or pull them over. An example of reasonable suspicion occurring before probable cause can involve a DUI stop. Prior to making a traffic stop, police officers must have reasonable suspicion that someone is under the influence. Once an officer approaches a person and is given more information to believe probable cause is formed, a search may then occur. For example, if someone is driving on a highway and swerving in and out of lanes, this gives an officer reasonable suspicion that they may be under the influence. However, probable cause to search cannot immediately happen. Officers can then perceive the driver is under the influence if an odor of alcohol or marijuana extends from the vehicle. cyber crime Also visible items that suggest being under the influence, like bottles, small bags, or residue can be present. These factors can then lead to probable cause to search. However, it is important for defendants to be able to distinguish at what point officers had probable cause or reasonable suspicion to approach. To gain a better understanding of your rights and what is legal to occur, reach out to a lawyer here at the Law Offices of Kelly and Conte.