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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Apr 17, 2013

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Rachel West Harmon, Assistant Attorney General; Mike Bottoms, District Attorney General; and Caleb Bayless, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellant, State of Tennessee.

Attorneys 2:

Gary Howell, Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee, (on appeal); and William C. Barnes, Columbia, Tennessee, (at trial), for the appellee, Wade Allen Willis.

Judge(s): WOODALL

Defendant, Wade Allen Willis, was indicted by the Maury County Grand Jury for the offenses of driving under the influence of intoxicants per se (DUI), violation of the registration law, violation of the financial responsibility law, and for failure to maintain control of his vehicle. The charges were the result of a traffic stop of Defendant by a state trooper of the Tennessee Highway Patrol. Defendant filed a motion to suppress evidence obtained as a result of his arrest, solely on the basis that his arrest “was without a warrant and without probable cause.” Defendant did not assert that the officer lacked reasonable suspicion to initiate a stop of Defendant. Following a hearing on the motion to suppress, the trial court took the matter under advisement. The trial court subsequently entered a written order granting Defendant’s motion to suppress all evidence obtained “following the initial detention and subsequent arrest.” The State has appealed, following a nolle prosequi of the indictment. Following a thorough review we reverse the judgment of the trial court, reinstate the charges, and remand for further proceedings.