Phoenix, AZ asked in Criminal Law and Traffic Tickets for Arizona

Q: I live in Az and was recently stopped illegally. After the stop the officer never cited me for the original made up

Offense. I was charged with driving while revoked and taken to jail. After the stop the officer made a comment he thought my wife was a prostitute and that's what we were up to. The area we were in was near Metro Center Mall and i guess it's a high crime area. Neither of these is probable cause for a stop. The officer wouldn't give me a reason at first, then said it was because i swerved into his lane during a left hand turn. I have the dash cam that shows him nearly hitting me after coming more then half way into my lane. I almost had to drive on sidewalk to avoid collision.

I need to file a suppression motion to the courts and was hoping for any positive feedback that would be helpful. I know it's covered under the 4th amendment of the constitution that i can do this. Just looking for a little advice. Thank you

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1 Lawyer Answer
Matthew Maerowitz
Matthew Maerowitz
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Licensed in Arizona

A: The standard for an officer to initiate a traffic stop is actually Reasonable Suspicion (not Probable Cause). Reasonable suspicion is a lower standard than probable cause. You really should consider hiring an attorney as we are very familiar with writing suppression motions. With reasonable suspicion don't get your hopes up on winning it. In practice, if an officer suspects any traffic violation at all, judges typically uphold the stop as legal.

Probable cause which is a slightly higher standard is required when the officer makes an arrest (but again not required for a stop).

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