≡ Menu

COA holds moving motorist within parking not not unreasonable transport

State v. Adekola John Adekale, 2022AP1351, 3/9/20223, District 4 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs)

An officer stopped Adekale’s vehicle for speeding and having a bad taillight. Adekale parked his car in a parking lot on the south side of a Motel 6. There were six passengers in the car, who “kept chiming in” and asking about the stop. They were boisterous and seemed to have been drinking. The officer asked them to leave, and they walked toward the hotel’s entrances, though the officer could not see if they went in.

The officer said he smelled intoxicants on Adekale and that he had glossy eyes and slurred speech. He opted to move Adekale–who he cuffed and placed in his squad–to the portion of the parking lot on the other side of the motel, for “officer safety” and to prevent potential disruption of the field sobriety tests the officer planned to conduct. Eventually Adekale was convicted of OWI; he appeals the denial of his suppression motion.

At issue is whether the movement within the parking lot violated Terry‘s requirement that temporary detentions be conducted “reasonably”. The governing case on movements of detainees in Wisconsin is State v. Quartana, 213 Wis. 2d 440, 446, 570 N.W.2d 618 (Ct. App. 1997). Quartana imposes a two-part test, permitting movement of a person if (1) the person was moved within the vicinity of the stop, and (2) the purpose in moving the person within the vicinity was reasonable.

As to the first prong, the court concludes that movement from one parking lot to another in the same hotel complex was within the vicinity:

It is undisputed that Adekale was stopped in a parking lot on one side of a motel, and the circuit court found that Adekale was transported to the other side of the motel, “very close” to where Adekale had been stopped. The parties do not dispute that, as Digre testified and one of the videos played at trial showed, the transport took just under one minute of travel time. I conclude that these facts establish that Adekale was transported within the vicinity of the stop.


Rejecting Adekale’s arguments that (1) the circuit court erred in considering the officer’s subjective belief that he acted reasonably and (2) movement to a “secluded” part of the parking lot was inherently unreasonable under Quartana, the court upholds the movement and the arrest:

The second prong of the Quartana test is whether the purpose for transporting Adekale was reasonable. Id. at 446. The circuit court credited Digre’s testimony that the passengers’ conduct while Digre was interacting with Adekale was disruptive. The court found that the passengers left when Digre told them that “he had to do some paperwork,” that Digre could not see whether all of the passengers actually entered the motel, and that it was possible that the passengers “could have returned to the scene” if they saw Digre instead conducting field sobriety tests. I conclude that Digre’s transport of Adekale to the north side of the motel parking lot had the reasonable purpose of ensuring the undisrupted conducting of the field sobriety tests and ensuring the officer’s safety.




{ 0 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment