Search and seizure – emergency lights

Jay Leiderman
By: Jay Leiderman
August 12 2015

Defendant was detained when the officer stopped behind his parked car and activated the emergency lights.  (350)
An officer investigating an emergency call of a fight in progress pulled his patrol car behind defendant’s parked vehicle and activated the emergency lights. He approached the car and saw defendant sitting behind the wheel, apparently intoxicated. A reasonable person would not have felt free to leave and defendant submitted to a show of authority by remaining in his car. Nevertheless, the detention was supported by reasonable suspicion given a reliable citizen’s report of a violent fight (potentially involving a firearm), the deputy’s quick response time and defendant’s presence near the scene of the fight in the otherwise unoccupied alley.
People v. Brown ____ Cal.4th ____, ____ Cal.Rptr.3d ____, 2015 D.A.R 8986 (2015) August 06, 2015 (S218993)