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Circuit Court Overrules Trial Court. Officer Had Developed Reasonable Suspicion Of Dui.

By Expert Author: Henry Rundquist

The Circuit Court acting in its appellate capacity over the county court reversed & remanded the lower court's ruling granting defendant's motion to suppress in the case of State v. Majaraj. The defendant submitted his motion to suppress certain evidence arguing that the law enforcement officer did not develope reasonable suspicion to detain the defendant for a DUI investigation. The appellate court gave deference to the findings of fact made by the lower court, but reversed the ruling because it determined that the lower court's ruling wasn't supported by competent evidence. The trial court's findings of fact were that the officer witnessed the defendant speeding and conducted a traffic stop on defendant's vehicle. When the police officer made contact with the defendant, the law enforcement officer smelled the odor of alcohol eminating from defendant's person & also noticed that defenddant's eyes were bloodshot. The defendant admitted to drinking alcoholic beverages earlier in the day. The circuit court held that the officer had reasonable suspicion in order to temporarily detain defendant in order to conduct a DUI investigation when it applied the law to the county court's factual findings. The appellate court issued an opinion reversing the trial court's order allowing the defendant's motion to suppress and remanded the case to the lower court in order for the lower court to conduct further proceedings consistant with the circuit court's decision.

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