CA5: Facts of this alleged Rodriguez violation get QI

Plaintiff was stopped on I-40 and then he later sued complaining the stop was continued too long. On the facts he presents, it was not clearly established that the continuation of this stop was unreasonable. Weisshaus v. Teichelman, 2024 U.S. App. LEXIS 3488 (5th Cir. Feb. 14, 2024). [Bottom line here: By qualified immunity, it’s going to be nearly impossible to bring a 1983 claim for an alleged Rodriguez violation unless the facts are patently obvious the officer violated the Fourth Amendment.]

“Based on the totality of the circumstances, the undersigned finds there was reasonable suspicion for Defendant’s continued detention following the traffic stop. The officers encountered Defendant at 2:00 a.m. in a high crime area. See Illinois v. Wardlow, 528 U.S. 119, 124 (2000) (‘[T]he fact that the stop occurred in a ‘high crime area’ [is] among the relevant contextual considerations in a Terry analysis.’). Both Defendant and Wright had criminal histories involving methamphetamine. The evidence also shows that Defendant and Wright exhibited unusual behaviors. Defendant’s unsolicited statement that he did not consent to a search of the vehicle when Officer Freyermuth was only attempting to get the vehicle’s VIN was indicative of someone trying to hide something. Wright’s nervous behavior also contributed to the officers’ suspicions.” And Wright appeared to be under the influence and seemed to be avoiding eye contact. United States v. Cardinale, 2024 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25776 (D. Neb. Jan. 10, 2024),* adopted, 2024 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26983 (D. Neb. Feb. 13, 2024).*

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