Appeal from the Circuit Court of Wayne County. No. 12-DT-7. Honorable Joe Harrison, Judge, presiding.
In defendant's prosecution for two counts of driving under the influence of alcohol, the denial of her motion to quash her arrest and suppress evidence was reversed, as were the finding that she was guilty of one count of DUI and the order placing her on court supervision, since the arresting officer's testimony established that he had no suspicion of any criminal activity when he followed defendant's vehicle in an unmarked police car into a private drive while " looking for violations," and his testimony that he thought defendant might be hiding from the police or was involved in a theft, the manufacture of methamphetamine or other foul play precluded any claim that he was acting in his community caretaking capacity.
For Appellant: Michael J. Pelletier, State Appellate Defender, Ellen J. Curry, Deputy Defender, Sara D. Parrish, Assistant Appellate Defender, Maggie A. Heim, Assistant Appellate Defender, Office of the State Appellate Defender, Fifth Judicial District, Mt. Vernon, IL.
For Appellee: Hon. David M. Williams, State's Attorney, Fairfield, IL; Patrick Delfino, Director, Lawrence M. Bauer, Deputy Director, Jay Paul Hoffmann, Staff Attorney, Office of the State's Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor, Elgin, IL (brief was prepared with the assistance of Marques Berrington, Third Year Law Student at The John Marshall Law School).
JUSTICE STEWART delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Justice Goldenhersh concurred in the judgment and opinion. Justice Welch dissented, with opinion.
[¶1] The defendant, Katelyn M. Bozarth, was charged with two counts of driving under the influence of alcohol. The defendant filed a motion to quash the arrest and suppress the evidence obtained against her, which the trial court denied after a hearing. At a bench trial, the defendant stipulated to the State's evidence, while maintaining her objection to the order denying her motion to quash and suppress evidence. The trial court found the defendant guilty on one count of driving under
the influence of alcohol and ordered the defendant to one year of court supervision. The defendant filed a timely appeal. We reverse.
[¶3] The following factual recitation is taken from a hearing held on the defendant's motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence. On January 27, 2012, at approximately 1:22 a.m., Trooper Adam Zimmerman was on routine patrol in a rural area of Wayne County. The officer testified that he was " looking for violations" when he observed the defendant's red Pontiac stopped at a four-way stop heading westbound. The officer, who was in an unmarked squad car at the four-way stop intersection headed eastbound, turned his squad car around and followed the Pontiac. The officer testified that the only reason he chose to follow the Pontiac was that it was the only vehicle in the area.
[¶4] The officer followed the Pontiac for approximately one-half of a mile when he observed the vehicle turn north into a private driveway. There was a house approximately 100 yards north at the end of the private drive. When the officer did not see taillights going up to the house, he pulled into the private drive. As he was driving up the drive, he observed a pole barn on his right. The barn was approximately 50 yards from the public road. The officer observed the Pontiac parked behind the pole barn with its lights ...