The opinion of the court was delivered by: ARLANDER KEYS, Magistrate Judge
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Michael Davis sued Charles Novy and Luis Escobar, both police
officers with the Village of Bolingbrook, alleging that they
violated his Fourth Amendment rights during the course of a
traffic stop and the subsequent search of his truck and his home.
The case went to trial on May 17, 2004, and, at the close of
Plaintiff's case, the Court granted Defendants' Motion for
Judgment as a Matter of Law. Currently before the Court is Mr.
Davis' Motion for a New Trial, or in the Alternative, to Alter or
Amend Judgment. For the reasons set forth below, the Court denies
Mr. Davis' Motion.
The Court fully set forth the relevant factual background,
including the evidence and testimony introduced at trial, in its
Memorandum Opinion and Order granting Defendant's Motion for
Judgment as a Matter of Law. Davis v. Novy, No. 03 C 572, 2004 WL 1368798 (N.D. Ill. June 16, 2004). The Court will repeat the
On February 9, 2002, Michael Davis was driving around his
Bolingbrook neighborhood taking pictures of snow mounds. Mr.
Davis, who uses a wheelchair to get around, was attempting to
document a problem with the way the village plowed snow;
according to Mr. Davis, the plows piled the snow in a way that
blocked his access to streets and sidewalks and prevented him
from taking his dogs out for exercise. Mr. Davis left his house
at about 11:30 a.m., driving around the neighborhood in his 1995
dark green Ford F150 pickup truck with a black camper shell on
the back of it.
At about noon that same day, the Bolingbrook police department
received a call through its 9-1-1 dispatcher, complaining that a
white male was driving around the area of Commonwealth and
Brighton in Bolingbrook, taking pictures of a young girl. The
caller reported that the man was wearing a hat and driving a
black Ford pickup truck with a cab on the back. The dispatcher
assigned two officers to respond to the call, Officer Charles
Novy and Officer Luis Escobar.
Upon arriving at the general area reported in the call, Officer
Novy saw Mr. Davis, a white male, and his dark green Ford pickup
truck with a cab on the back of it. Officer Novy followed Mr.
Davis for a bit, and then pulled him over. Upon doing so, Officer Novy noticed a hat and a camera bag on the seat next to
Mr. Davis; he also saw towels, duct tape and rope in the cab.
When Mr. Davis could not provide a valid Illinois driver's
license or proof of insurance, Officer Novy arrested him, placing
him in the backseat of his squad car.
Officer Escobar joined the two at some point during this
initial encounter. The officers searched Mr. Davis' truck, after
obtaining Mr. Davis' permission to do so, and found a pair of
women's thong underpants and a stub from the Brookfield
Children's Zoo. They then asked him to sign a card stating: "I
give the Bolingbrook police department permission to search the
following: [here, Officer Escobar had filled in "residence"]
located at the following: [here, Officer Escobar had filled in
1095 Bothwell," Mr. Davis' address]. I give this permission
voluntarily & without threats or promises of any kind." See
Plaintiff's Exhibit 8. Mr. Davis signed the card, and the
officers searched his home. That search turned up nothing to
suggest that Mr. Davis was involved in any way with child
pornography or other child exploitation.
After the search, the officers and Mr. Davis went back outside,
where Officer Novy issued citations to Mr. Davis for driving
without a valid Illinois' driver's license, for driving an
uninsured vehicle, and for having an obstructed registration
sticker on his rear license plate all violations of the Illinois vehicle code. Officer Novy allowed Mr. Davis to give a
signature in lieu of posting a bond, and then he left; Officer
Escobar left while Novy was writing up the citations.
Almost a year later, on January 24, 2003, Mr. Davis sued
Officer Novy and Officer Escobar, alleging that they violated his
constitutional rights in the course of the initial stop, and in
the subsequent searches of his person, his truck and his home.
The case was tried before a jury on May 17, 18 and 19, 2004. At
trial, Mr. Davis testified first. He explained that, on February
9, 2002, he decided to drive through the neighborhood to take
pictures of snow mounds so that he could show the Village how the
snow impeded his access to the streets and sidewalks, and to try
to find a way to solve the problem. Tr. at 106. He described the
route he drove, which, according to the map shown to the jury,
put him in or near the area reported in the 9-1-1 call. Tr. at
Mr. Davis testified that, at some point while he was out on his
picture-taking expedition, he noticed a police car following him,
and he was eventually pulled over. Tr. at 110, 112-13. He
testified that, when Officer Novy approached the truck, he asked
the officer whether he had done anything wrong, and Officer Novy
had responded "no." Tr. at 113. According to Mr. Davis, Officer
Novy said he stopped him because the police department had "received an anonymous 911 phone call from some woman stating
that I had been taking pictures of children." Tr. at 114. Mr.
Davis testified that Officer Novy then asked him for his driver's
license and insurance card; he produced his Indiana driver's
license, which he learned was no longer valid, but he was unable
to provide an insurance card. Tr. at 115, 117.
Mr. Davis testified that Officer Escobar arrived on the scene
about this time, and, after the two officers conferred briefly,
Officer Novy asked Mr. Davis if he could search his truck. Tr. at
117-18. Mr. Davis testified that he asked what would happen if he
refused, and Officer Novy told him that they would have to
impound his truck and take him to jail. Tr. at 118. Mr. Davis
testified that he then agreed to the search; Officer Novy
searched his truck for about 30 to 45 minutes, while Mr. Davis
sat on the tailgate of his truck, with Officer Escobar standing
in front of him in a defensive posture. Tr. at 119-20, 122.
Mr. Davis testified that, after Officer Novy searched the
truck, he told Mr. Davis he was under arrest; Officer Novy patted
him down and asked him to empty his pockets, which he did. Tr. at
123. Mr. Davis testified that Officer Novy then placed him in the
backseat of the squad car and told him that he wanted to search
his house, which was just a few blocks away. Tr. at 13-24. Mr.
Davis testified that he again asked what would happen if he refused, and Officer Novy again told him that he would impound
his truck and take him to jail. Tr. at 124. Mr. Davis testified
that the officers presented him with a consent card, and he
signed it. Tr. at 124, 127. The three then proceeded to his
house, where Officer Novy searched through his bedroom (in the
closets, dresser drawers, and boxes) and took a cursory ...