CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, May 3, 2019

"Wisconsin top court rules asking about concealed weapon during traffic stop does not violate Fourth Amendment"

From Jurist:

John Patrick Wright was charged with carrying a concealed weapon in violation of Wisconsin State Statute § 941.23(2). Two Milwaukee police officers pulled Wright over for having his passenger headlight out. During the traffic stop, the officers inquired whether there was a weapon in the car and whether Wright had a valid concealed carry permit (commonly called a CCW permit in Wisconsin). Wright admitted there was a weapon in his glove compartment and allowed the officers to confiscate it for the duration of the traffic stop. Wright was then arrested for unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon, leading to this case.

. . .

The Supreme Court found that the concealed carry inquiries did not meaningfully extend the traffic stop in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The court specifically found that police have a right to make inquiries incident to the traffic stop that may protect their safety.

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