Motion to Suppress a Murder Weapon Found in a Vehicle
In United States v. Analla, 975 F.2d 119 (4th Cir. 1992), police received a call indicating that a person matching the description of the man wanted in connection with a robbery and murder was using a pay phone outside a convenience store. See id. at 121.
Two officers approached the man, asked to speak with him, and requested his driver's license and registration. See id. at 122.
Upon receipt of the documents, one officer radioed the dispatcher from his walkie-talkie to check for outstanding warrants, while another officer asked for permission to search Analla's car. See id.
Analla consented and a pistol later identified as the murder weapon was retrieved from under the driver's seat. See id.
In affirming the district court's denial of Analla's motion to suppress, the Fourth Circuit determined that Analla was not seized when the officer approached and asked to see his license and registration.
The court noted:
"The officer necessarily had to keep Analla's license and registration for a short time in order to check it with the dispatcher. However, he did not take the license into his squad car, but instead stood beside the car, near where Analla was standing, and used his walkie-talkie. Analla was free at this point to request that his license and registration be returned and to leave the scene." Id. at 124.