Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Slade

United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle

May 23, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
RAQWON SLADE, Defendant.

          ORDER

          JOHN C. COUGHENOUR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         This matter comes before the Court on Defendant's motion to suppress and to dismiss the indictment (Dkt. No. 19). Having thoroughly considered the parties' briefing and the relevant record, and having heard testimony, the Court hereby DENIES the motion for the reasons explained herein.

         I. BACKGROUND

         The following factual findings are based on the testimony of King County Sheriff's Office Sergeant Timothy Sigel (hereinafter “Sgt. Sigel”) and Defendant Raqwon Slade (hereinafter “Slade”) elicited during a hearing before the Court on May 21, 2019. The Court found Sgt. Sigel's testimony to be more credible than Slade's testimony.

         In the early morning hours of December 2, 2018, Sgt. Sigel was on patrol parked outside of a large shopping complex in Fairwood, Washington. Sgt. Sigel is a 30-year veteran of the King County Sheriff's Office, who has primarily spent his career working patrol. That morning, Sgt. Sigel was alone and driving a marked police car. The shopping complex has several stores and restaurants, including a Safeway, Ace Hardware, and McDonald's. At that time, every business was closed except the Safeway, which was not visible from the area of the parking lot where Sgt. Sigel was located. Sgt. Sigel did not see any other cars in the parking lot.

         At around 2:55 a.m., Sgt. Sigel saw an adult male, later identified as Slade, standing in front of the entrance to Ace Hardware. Sgt. Sigel did not see anyone else in the immediate area. Sgt. Sigel watched Slade for about three to five minutes. During this time, Slade repeatedly disappeared from Sgt. Sigel's view by walking behind a cage of propane tanks in front of the store. Sgt. Sigel was parked approximately 50 to 75 yards from Slade's location, and Sgt. Sigel could not see what Slade was doing.

         At approximately 2:58 a.m., Sgt. Sigel radioed to dispatch that he was going to contact Slade.[1] As he drove closer, Sgt. Sigel saw Slade urinating on a pillar in front of Ace Hardware. As Sgt. Sigel drove up to Slade, he began to walk away. Sgt. Sigel got out and told Slade to walk over to his patrol car three times. Sgt. Sigel testified that Slade looked like he was going to run. Sgt. Sigel stepped into Slade's path and asked Slade if he had identification. Slade responded by reaching his right hand toward his right front waistband.[2] Sgt. Sigel was standing behind Slade and could not see Slade's right hand when he reached for his waistband. Sgt. Sigel told Slade to show his hands and to not reach for his waistband.

         Slade testified that he complied with Sgt. Sigel's request to show his hands by putting both of his hands up in the air. Notwithstanding Sgt. Sigel's command, Slade stated that he again reached down to get his identification. Sgt. Sigel testified that Slade was not reaching for his back pocket, but toward his right front waistband. Sgt. Sigel drew his sidearm and held it at the low ready, pointed toward the ground. Sgt. Sigel ordered Slade to put his hands on the patrol car. Slade complied and put both hands on the patrol car.

         Sgt. Sigel testified that Slade again reached for his right front waistband with his right hand. Sgt. Sigel responded by repeatedly telling Slade to show his hands. When Slade failed to show his hands, Sgt. Sigel pushed Slade against the patrol car and again ordered him to show his hands. Sgt. Sigel testified that Slade again reached for his right front waistband, at which point Sgt. Sigel pointed his sidearm at Slade's head and ordered him to show his hands.[3]

         After Slade placed his hands on the patrol car again, Sgt. Sigel grabbed Slade's right arm and patted down the right front waistband area where Slade had been reaching. Sgt. Sigel immediately felt what he believed to be the butt of a handgun tucked into Slade's waistband. Sgt. Sigel removed a loaded .45 handgun from Slade's front right waistband and placed Slade in handcuffs. Approximately two minutes elapsed between the time Sgt. Sigel made contact with Slade and the time Slade was in handcuffs.

         A subsequent records check revealed that Slade was a convicted felon. Slade was ultimately indicted on one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. (Dkt. No. 1.) Slade moves to suppress the handgun and to dismiss the indictment. (Dkt. No. 19.)

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Motion to Suppress

         Slade argues that the handgun should be suppressed for four separate reasons. First, Slade asserts that Sgt. Sigel lacked reasonable suspicion to conduct a Terry frisk. (Dkt. No. 19 at 5.) Second, Slade asserts that Sgt. Sigel's actions transformed what began as an investigatory detention into an arrest that lacked probable cause. (Id. at 7.) Third, Slade asserts that Sgt. Sigel used excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment. (Id. at 8.) Fourth, Slade argues that Sgt. Sigel's use of force was so ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.