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United States v. Offord

United States District Court, C.D. Illinois, Springfield Division

February 2, 2018




         Defendant Keith Offord is charged with bank fraud, access device fraud, and aggravated identity theft. Defendant has filed a Motion to Suppress (d/e 14) evidence obtained during a traffic stop that Defendant argues was improperly prolonged. As the Court ruled on June 27, 2017, during the evidentiary hearing on the Motion to Suppress, the motion is DENIED.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Shortly before midnight on August 20, 2015, Illinois State Trooper Christopher Parmley stopped Defendant Keith Offord and Defendant’s passenger, Constance Howay, for speeding on Interstate 55. From his post along the interstate, just outside of Bloomington, Illinois, Trooper Parmley clocked Defendant’s vehicle as traveling 84 miles per hour, 14 miles per hour above the posted speed limit of 70. Trooper Parmley turned on his light bar, which activated a dash video camera that recorded the encounter. [1] He began to pull Defendant over to the side of the road at minute 1:05. The vehicles come to a stop at 1:19.

         At approximately minute 1:30 of the recording, Trooper Parmley approached the vehicle. Trooper Parmley informed Defendant of his speed then asked whether Defendant owned the vehicle. (1:43). In reaction to Defendant’s inaudible response, Trooper Parmley requested to see the rental agreement. (1:48). Trooper Parmley inquired where Defendant and Ms. Howay were coming from. (1:53). In response to Defendant’s answer, Trooper Parmley asked how long the passengers were in St. Louis. Defendant stated they were “in and out.” (2:07).

         Trooper Parmley looked into the back seat of the vehicle with his flashlight. He noticed a large amount of clothing and several boxed iPhones in the back seat of the vehicle and he asked whether any other passengers were in the car. (2:15). He asked whether the two were shopping on their trip.

         Trooper Parmley requested identification from both Defendant and Ms. Howay. Defendant provided his Illinois driver’s license and stated that Ms. Howay did not have identification to provide. (2:36). Trooper Parmley then requested that Ms. Howay follow him to his squad car. (2:40).

         Trooper Parmley and Ms. Howay sat down in the squad car (2:59). Trooper Parmley then entered Ms. Howay’s name, date of birth, and state of her identification into the LEADS check on his computer. (3:17). Trooper Parmley asked Ms. Howay where the two were coming from and how long they had been there, to which Ms. Howay responded they had been in St. Louis for four days. (3:42).

         Trooper Parmley asked if she had ever been arrested, and she replied, “A long time ago.” (3:59). He then stated that Ms. Howay had an outstanding warrant for her arrest for “dangerous drugs.” (4:08). He asked her if anything like drugs were in the car or whether Keith had any such thing. (4:20).

         Trooper Parmley inquired as to the details of Ms. Howay’s relationship with Defendant. In response to his questions, she stated that Defendant was a friend whom she had known for three years and that she and Defendant stayed in a hotel in St. Louis in separate rooms. (4:40).

         During the conversation, Trooper Parmley had entered Defendant’s information into the LEADS database check and learned by minute 4:52 that Defendant had been arrested for a weapon offense and had been previously convicted for “fraud/theft.” Government’s Response to Motion to Suppress at 3 (d/e 18) (hereinafter Response). Trooper Parmley told Ms. Howay that he was going to call for a canine unit at 4:58. He then told her that he did not know what the bond would be on her arrest. (5:06).

         Trooper Parmley told Ms. Howay that the arrest warrant was issued in Cicero on July 28, 2015, and Ms. Howay said that she had been arrested around July 4. (5:17). He said the warrant was for possession of a controlled substance or paraphernalia. (5:55) and that she had failed to appear (6:53). She stated that she paid the required fine and that the warrant should not be pending. (6:54).

         Trooper Parmley called on the radio for a canine unit. (5:34). He then radioed Ms. Howay’s identifying information to his dispatch. (7:02). The dispatcher stated on the radio that the warrant was a failure-to-appear arrest warrant for dangerous drugs and that Ms. Howay was “Wanted, Armed, and Dangerous.” (8:07). Dispatch then confirmed that Trooper Parmley’s current location was within the geographic limit of the warrant and broadcast an alert tone to all officers in the area to provide backup. (8:32).

         Trooper Parmley and Ms. Howay stepped out of the squad car (8:55), he placed her in hand cuffs (9:06), and he patted her down (9:20). Trooper Parmley then placed Ms. Howay in the squad car. (9:56).

         Trooper Parmley then exited the squad car and approached Defendant in his vehicle. (10:04). Trooper Parmley told Defendant that Ms. Howay had a warrant out for her arrest for a controlled substance or paraphernalia. (10:16). Trooper Parmley told Defendant to “[j]ust hang out for us….” (10:42) and to wait until Trooper Parmley knew the bond information (10:46). He asked if Ms. Howay had any luggage in the vehicle, to which Defendant stated she did. (10:51). Trooper Parmley then repeated his direction for Defendant to “hang out.” (10:52).

         Trooper Jefferson arrived as backup. Trooper Parmley spoke to him about the situation behind the squad car (11:06). At 11:55, Trooper Parmley returned to his squad car and told Ms. Howay that he had informed Defendant of her arrest. At minute 12:08, dispatch announced on the radio that the canine was on scene.2 At the hearing, Trooper Parmley testified that the metallic sound heard on the video at minute 12:25 was created by his ticket book hitting the buttons on his uniform and that the click sound was his pen to write out Defendant’s ticket. Trooper Parmley asked Ms. Howay if she had any luggage in the vehicle. (12:50). Trooper Parmley then told Trooper Jefferson to place Defendant in Trooper Jefferson’s squad car and to tell Defendant to roll up the windows so that the dog could walk around the vehicle for the sniff test. (12:32).

         At 12:54, Trooper Jefferson is seen talking to Defendant in his vehicle. Defendant exits the vehicle at 13:08. While Defendant was standing outside of the vehicle waiting for the canine to conduct the sniff test, Trooper Parmley asked Defendant if he still lived at the ' At the hearing, Trooper Parmley testified that the “23023” announcement heard on dispatch at this time signified that the dog was on scene, “230” being shorthand for a canine unit and “23” ...

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