Watts v. County of Sacramento – Case Brief Summary (Federal Court)

Watts v. County of Sacramento - Case Brief Summary (Federal Court)

In Watts v. County of Sacramento, 256 F.3d 886 (9th Cir. 2001), the police received an anonymous tip on the whereabouts of Chris Burgess, a suspected murderer for whom an arrest warrant had been issued.

The police officer assigned to investigate the tip was informed that: "(1) Burgess was a black male standing 6' 1" and weighing 200 pounds; (2) there was a warrant for Burgess's arrest on a murder charge; and (3) Burgess was possibly located at a certain address with his girlfriend and two children." Id. at 888.

Officers went to the residence and knocked on the door, which was opened by Chris Pryor. Pryor was wearing boxer shorts and he fit Burgess's general description. Id.

The officers asked Pryor if his name was Chris; when he said that it was, they handcuffed him and performed a protective sweep of the house. Id.