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Officer had reasonable suspicion to continue detention and administer field sobriety tests

Marquette County v. Randy S. Tomaw, 2013AP1510, District 4, 3/6/14; court of appeals decision (1-judge; ineligible for publication); case activity

Tomaw was going 17 miles over the speed limit at 1:20 on a Sunday morning. He did not appear to respond to the officer’s initial attempt at contact, his upper body swayed as he walked to the rear of his vehicle, and the officer detected the “strong odor” of alcohol on his breath. Tomaw also made suspiciously inconsistent statements when questioned about his alcohol consumption that evening. “Not only was Tomaw’s initial denial suspicious in itself (given the strong odor of intoxicants), there was a fair inference that Tomaw was only moving toward the truth when he first said that he had consumed no drinks, then said one beer, then two.” (¶14). While any one of these facts taken alone wouldn’t be enough, it is the totality of the circumstances that matters, State v. Post, 2007 WI 60, ¶13, 301 Wis. 2d 1, 733 N.W.2d 634, and taken together these facts constitute reasonable suspicion.

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