Appellate Court Finds Illegal Police Search

In State v. Fox, the Illinois Appellate Court held that the Defendant's Fourth Amendment rights were violated when the police searched him.  Here, the police observed two people matching the description of suspects of a burglary of smoke shop one block away.  The police ordered the 2 persons to stop and then searched them.  The Court held that no articulable facts existed at the time to support the police's assertion that this defendant was at that time armed and dangerous, even though the risk of flight does further justify the initial stop.    

Based on the law and this case, the public should know that the police cannot just tell a person to stop on the street and search them, without more.  However, a person must not disobey a police officer's order, even if that person believes it is unlawful.  If a person disobeys a police officer's order, they risk being charged with Resisting or Obstructing a Police Officer.  

Therefore, if faced with this situation, one should not consent to a search, but neither should one refuse to obey a police order.  If in fact an arrest occurs, one should consult an attorney to decide how to proceed with a possible Motion to Suppress.