United States v. Street

Pewaukee, Wisconsin law enforcement officers were searching for two African‐American men who, moments before, had committed an armed robbery and had been tracked to the parking lot of a nearby Walmart store. An officer stopped and questioned Street, the only African‐American man in the crowded Walmart. Street was not arrested then, but during the stop, he provided identifying information that helped lead to his later arrest for the robbery. The Seventh Circuit affirmed Street’s conviction, rejecting his argument that the stop violated his Fourth Amendment rights because he was stopped based on just a hunch and his race and sex. The officers stopped Street based on much more information than his race and sex. They did not carry out a dragnet that used racial profiling. Rather, the police had the combination of Street being where he was, when he was there, and one of a handful of African‐American men on the scene, thus fitting the description of the men who had committed an armed robbery just minutes before. That information gave the officers a reasonable suspicion that Street may have just been involved with an armed robbery, authorizing the “Terry” stop. View "United States v. Street" on Justia Law