Theo found himself in trouble. He had been in the wrong place at the wrong time. Lynn Police had been conducting surveillance on a specific house looking to make an arrest of another person. While the police were surveying the house and the street, a detective saw Theo’s vehicle parked. Theo was in the car and on his phone texting. The detective did not recognize Theo. The detective drove around the block and noticed that Theo’s vehicle had moved and was parked further down the street. Another person, also unknown to the detective, got into Theo’s car, sat with Theo for a few minutes then got out and walked away. Then Theo drove away.
The detective believed that a drug deal had taken place. He followed Theo and conducted a motor vehicle stop. Theo’s vehicle was searched by the police. A large amount of cash was found inside the car. On the ground outside the car there were two bags containing pills that were believed to be Oxycontin. Theo was arrested and later indicted for possession with intent to distribute a Class B substance, subsequent offense.
There was some question as to whether the detective had enough basis for the stop. He didn’t know Theo or the man who got into Theo’s car. He did not see anything change hands. He had no solid reason to believe that a crime was being committed. A motion to suppress evidence was litigated, challenging the basis for the stop. The motion to suppress was allowed and the matter was dismissed.
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