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Police had reasonable suspicion to stop driver to investigate both OWI and theft

Sun Prairie v. Brent D. Curry, 2013AP1206, District 4, 11/7/13; court of appeals decision (1-judge; ineligible for publication); case activity

Police had reasonable suspicion to stop Curry, who was driving on a residential street at 3:40 a.m., turned around, sped past the officer’s car, and then turned at a high rate of speed into the driveway of a residence. He then sat in the car for a few minutes before getting out and walking up the driveway; when approached and questioned, he admitted to drinking. (¶¶3-8).

¶15      I agree with the circuit court that the officer could have reasonably suspected that Curry was engaged in some type of theft-of-property-related crime based on the following facts: the time of night, Curry’s lingering in the vehicle, the license plate check showing Curry probably lived at a different address, Curry’s odd action consisting of sitting in the car for a time and then walking to and along the front of the garage and away from the front door of the house, and the officer’s knowledge of problems with thefts of property from vehicles in the neighborhood.

¶16      In addition, I conclude that the officer could have reasonably suspected that Curry was driving while intoxicated based on the following circumstances: the time of night, Curry’s series of unusual driving behaviors, including fast acceleration, Curry’s lingering in the vehicle, and Curry’s behavior after he exited the vehicle….

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