Apr 30

Commonwealth v. A.C.

Commonwealth v. A.C.

Philadelphia Highway Patrol Officers were in the area of Kinsey and Sellers Streets when they observed A.C. disregard a stop sign. Upon pulling his car over, it was determined that the registration came back to a Kia despite the fact that the car was a Nissan. The officers claimed that they instructed A.C. to roll all his windows down, but they were only partially rolled down. They also claimed that he was moving around in the car so much that the entire vehicle was shaking. An officer claimed that A.C. continued to stare at a blue bag in the back seat, and that when the officer saw the same bag he could clearly see the outline of a gun in the bag. Officers asked A.C. if he had a permit to carry, which A.C. did not have. Based on all of the observations of the officers, A.C. was removed from the car and police “frisked” the bag and then recovered a loaded firearm. Due to previous convictions, A.C. was not permitted to own or possess a gun. The defense filed a motion to suppress evidence, challenging the officers’ credibility and arguing that the police lacked reasonable suspicion that A.C. was armed and dangerous, or probable cause that he was committing a crime. At the hearing, the defense requested that the officers bring the gun and bag into the courtroom. On cross examination, the defense placed the gun in the bag and showed it to the judge, which demonstrated that it was IMPOSSIBLE to see the outline of a firearm. The judge found that the officers did not testify credibly and granted the motion to suppress evidence. The DA was then forced to withdraw prosecution of the case and A.C. was released from custody.

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