764 Fed.Appx. 266 (3rd Cir. 2019), 18-1513, United States v. King

Docket Nº:18-1513
Citation:764 Fed.Appx. 266
Opinion Judge:KRAUSE, Circuit Judge.
Party Name:UNITED STATES of America v. Michael KING, Appellant
Attorney:Whitney C. Cloud, Esq., Edmond Falgowski, Esq., Office of United States Attorney, Wilmington, DE, for Plaintiff-Appellee Tieffa N. Harper, Esq., Eleni Kousoulis, Esq., Office of Federal Public Defender, Wilmington, DE, for Defendant-Appellant
Judge Panel:Before: SHWARTZ, KRAUSE, and BIBAS, Circuit Judges
Case Date:April 02, 2019
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
 
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Page 266

764 Fed.Appx. 266 (3rd Cir. 2019)

UNITED STATES of America

v.

Michael KING, Appellant

No. 18-1513

United States Court of Appeals, Third Circuit

April 2, 2019

NOT PRECEDENTIAL

Submitted Under Third Circuit L.A.R. 34.1(a) March 19, 2019

Editorial Note:

This opinion is not regarded as Precedents which bind the court under Third Circuit Internal Operating Procedure Rule 5.7. (See Federal Rule of Appellate Procedure Rule 32.1)

Page 267

On Appeal from the District Court for the District of Delaware (D. Del. 1-16-cr-00004-001), Honorable Gregory M. Sleet, U.S. District Judge

Whitney C. Cloud, Esq., Edmond Falgowski, Esq., Office of United States Attorney, Wilmington, DE, for Plaintiff-Appellee

Tieffa N. Harper, Esq., Eleni Kousoulis, Esq., Office of Federal Public Defender, Wilmington, DE, for Defendant-Appellant

Before: SHWARTZ, KRAUSE, and BIBAS, Circuit Judges

OPINION[*]

KRAUSE, Circuit Judge.

Defendant-Appellant Michael King appeals the District Court’s decision to deny his motion to suppress evidence. Because we conclude that the State Trooper who seized the evidence had reasonable suspicion to stop and frisk King and probable cause to arrest him, we will affirm.

I. Background

In December 2015, a Delaware State Trooper ("the Trooper") responded to a dispatch reporting "fighting" and disorderly conduct between two men inside a restaurant. App. 62. When he arrived at the restaurant, the Trooper spoke with the restaurant’s host, who acknowledged that he had called the police and "immediately pointed" to a man near the front window of the restaurant, later identified as Michael King. App. 66. King "immediately stop[ped] leaning on the front glass window" and "walk[ed] towards" the doorway where the Trooper was standing. Id. But when the Trooper put his "arm out across the doorway" and told King to stop so he could talk with him, King "immediately turned around" and walked "at a fast pace" toward the area of the restaurant where patrons were dining, ignoring the Trooper’s "multiple" calls for him to stop. App. 66-67. At some point, "to make sure [that King] didn’t walk ... any further toward anyone sitting inside the restaurant," the Trooper grabbed the hood of King’s sweatshirt and led him out the door. App. 67.

Once outside, the Trooper asked King for identification. King did not turn over the Delaware ID card that was visible in his wallet, but told the Trooper his name and asked the Trooper not to "run" him. App. 69. During this conversation, the Trooper observed signs of drunkenness, and, despite the Trooper’s "many" requests for King to keep his hands visible, King repeatedly reached inside his pockets. Id.

Concerned about what King might be hiding there, the Trooper began to frisk him, but King pushed away the Trooper’s hands and began to back away. The Trooper stopped him by pushing King against his patrol car and ordering him to keep his hands behind his back. Again, however, King moved away, and the two circled the Trooper’s patrol car until the Trooper grabbed the back of King’s sweatshirt, causing it to lift up and reveal a gun tucked into King’s waistband. The Trooper then tased King, retrieved the gun, and kept him restrained pending the arrival of backup.

Page 268

After the matter was referred to federal authorities, a grand jury indicted King for possessing a firearm as a felon, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § § 922(g)(1), 924(a)(2). King moved to suppress the firearm, but the District Court denied his motion, so he pleaded guilty while preserving his right to appeal the denial of his motion. This timely appeal followed.

II. Discussion1

On appeal, King argues that we must reverse the District Court and suppress the firearm because the Trooper did not have: (1)...

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