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Traffic Stop – Probable Cause – 911 Call

City of Sheboygan Falls v. John D. Prinsen, 2011AP700, District 2, 9/14/11

court of appeals decision (1-judge, not for publication); for Prinsen: Kirk B. Obear, Casey J. Hoff; case activity

Probable cause supported stop for driving wrong way on highway, based on information provided ion a 911 call; State v. Rutzinski, 2001 WI 22, 241 Wis. 2d 729, 623 N.W.2d 516, applied:

¶11      The Rutzinski standard is met in this case.  Liebenthal, unlike the informant in Rutzinski, was not anonymous.  He identified himself and provided a statement to the police, which significantly bolsters his credibility.  Liebenthal also observed Prinsen’s driving firsthand, and was close enough to report Prinsen’s license plate number.  Finally, Prinsen was allegedly driving on the wrong side of a highway, an immense threat to public safety.  Liebenthal was an amply reliable informant, and Officer Hoogester was justified in relying on the information conveyed by the dispatch operator.

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