PA: Flashing overhead lights on a police car means stop and stay until released; stopping to check GPS isn’t RS

According to the vehicle code and the driver’s license manual, when a police car has its lights on, a driver is to stop until let go. Here, the officer pulled up next to defendant’s car on the side of I-79 with overhead lights on to inquire what was going on. She was entering an address into the car’s GPS. She looked at him, and he thought she looked impaired, so that led to more of a stop. The stop here was unreasonable. Stopping to check GPS isn’t reasonable suspicion. “For the reasons set forth below, we conclude that Appellant was subjected to an illegal investigatory detention. Furthermore, although we take this opportunity to recognize the public servant ‘exception’ to the warrant requirement under the community caretaking doctrine, which in certain circumstances will permit a warrantless seizure, we conclude that the doctrine does not justify the detention of Appellant under the facts of this case. Thus, we hold that the Superior Court erred in affirming the trial court’s denial of Appellant’s motion to suppress evidence obtained as a result of her illegal investigatory detention, and we reverse the Superior Court’s decision and remand for further proceedings.” Commonwealth v. Livingstone, 2017 Pa. LEXIS 3244 (Nov. 27, 2017) (concurring and dissenting; dissenting).

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