United States District Court, D. Idaho
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
Lynn Winmill, United States District Court Chief Judge
around 4:30 in the morning on January 26, 2017, Jason
Bradford was pulled over for failing to maintain his lane.
During the traffic stop, a K9 officer arrived, asked Mr.
Bradford to step out of the car, conducted a patdown, and
discovered a gun in Mr. Bradford's jacket pocket. Mr.
Bradford moves to suppress this evidence, arguing that the
officers violated his Fourth Amendment rights by unlawfully
prolonging the traffic stop and patting him down.
See Dkt. 17.
Court heard testimony at an evidentiary hearing on September
28, 2017 and the parties submitted supplemental briefing
afterward. For the reasons explained below, the Court intends
to deny the motion, but will refrain from ruling at this
early morning hours of January 26, 2017, several Boise Police
Department officers, including Officers Mitch Tiner and Jason
Green, were surveilling a suspected drug-trafficking
residence in Boise. At around 4:00 a.m., Officer Green saw a
Ford Bronco pull up to the house and park on the street. The
driver went inside for between 15 and 40 minutes, then walked
outside carrying something in his hands. Before he got into
the Bronco and drove off, the driver handed the object he had
been carrying to one of two people who had walked outside
with him. The Bronco then left the residence but returned
within a minute or so. The driver stepped outside, was met by
one of the two people who had been standing outside with him
earlier, retrieved the object he had been carrying earlier,
and drove off again, this time without the headlights on.
Green did not follow the Bronco when it left because at the
time he was more interested in another vehicle that was
parked at the residence. Nevertheless, he radioed other
officers on duty to look out for traffic violations committed
by the Bronco.
one-half mile from the residence, Officer Tiner pulled over
the Bronco for failing to maintain its lane. Bradford, who
was driving the Bronco, said he had dropped his phone, which
explained why he had swerved out of his lane. For roughly the
first three minutes and thirty-four seconds of the stop,
Officer Tiner spoke with Bradford about his traffic
violation, Bradford's parole status, and the Bronco.
Bradford informed Officer Tiner that he was on parole for
attempted robbery, grand theft, and a firearms offense.
three minutes and forty-five seconds after pulling over
Bradford, Officer Tiner returned to his patrol car,
communicated with dispatch, pulled out Bradford's
driver's license, and began writing the citation. Before
he returned to his patrol car, however, two other officers,
Michelle Havens and Jessica Perkins, arrived on the scene.
Officer Havens positioned herself at the passenger window of
the Bronco before Officer Tiner returned to his patrol car to
write the citation.
fourth officer, Jason Green, arrived with his drug dog while
Officer Tiner was in his car filling out the citation.
Officer Green walked up to Officer Tiner, and the two
officers had a brief conversation. The first 26 seconds of
the conversation were recorded, and this is what the officers
Officer Green: Did you use the lights?
Officer Tiner: Yeah.
Officer Green: What's that?
Officer Tiner: Uhm, (inaudible) fail to maintain lane. When
he was coming down, he hit center, uh, lanes and then all the
way over into the solid white. I walked up and he was like,
“I'm sorry, I dropped my phone. I was trying to get
my phone off my feet.”
Officer Green: Did you uh, uh, did you tell him about