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Traffic Stop – Duration; Field Sobriety Testing – PBT

State v. Joshua L. McDonald, 2010AP1045-CR, District 4, 11/18/10

court of appeals decision (1-judge, not for publication); for McDonald: Tracey A. Wood; McDonald BiC; State Resp.; Reply

Traffic Stop – Duration

¶13      We conclude that the time it took for the deputy to ask McDonald whether he had been drinking that night and for McDonald to answer did not unreasonably prolong the stop.  The deputy asked McDonald the single, uncomplicated question in order to help determine whether McDonald was driving while intoxicated.  The public interest in keeping the roads safe for public use by prosecuting those who drive while intoxicated and deterring others from such action has repeatedly been recognized as a significant public interest.  Seee.g.State v. Nordness, 128 Wis. 2d 15, 33, 381 N.W.2d 300 (1986).  Additionally, our supreme court has held that the time it takes to ask a question “is not sufficiently intrusive to transform a reasonable, lawful stop into an unreasonable unlawful one.”  State v. Griffith, 2000 WI 72, ¶61, 236 Wis. 2d 48, 613 N.W.2d 72.  Clearly, this exceedingly brief extension of McDonald’s seizure is significantly outweighed by the importance of prosecuting and preventing impaired driving.

Discussion by court of State v. Ramon Lopez Arias, 2008 WI 84, which reduced favorable extended-stop language in State v. Betow, 226 Wis.2d 90, 593 N.W.2d 499 (Ct. App. 1999) to “broad dicta.” ¶11. The analysis doesn’t turn on whether the officer’s questioning was related to the purpose of the stop (here: speeding) but, rather, whether it unreasonably extended the stop, ¶12.

Field Sobriety Testing – PBT

Strong odor of intoxicants and bloodshot and glassy eyes provided reasonable suspicion to administer field sobriety ¶¶14-17.

Probable cause also found to administer PBT, ¶¶18-23, facts likened to those in County of Jefferson v. Renz, 231 Wis. 2d 293, 603 N.W.2d 541 (1999).

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