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United States v. Davis

United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
569 F.3d 813 (2009)


In 2007, a Joplin, Missouri, police officer Shelby Howard stopped a vehicle driven by Uneal Davis (defendant) for speeding. A sheriff’s deputy assisted with the stop. Howard smelled the odor of marijuana as he approached the vehicle and asked Davis to step out so he could conduct a pat-down search. During the pat-down, Howard found a lump in Davis’ pocket which Davis admitted to being a bag of marijuana. Howard then arrested Davis and placed him in his patrol car. Howard then ordered three passengers in Davis’ car out so that he could search the vehicle. During the search, Howard found a loaded handgun in the center console and observed open bottles of beer. Davis was charged with one count of possession of a firearm by a prohibited person in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(1), 922(g)(3), and 924(a)(2). After his indictment, Davis filed a motion to suppress the handgun found on the ground that the search violated the Fourth Amendment. The district court denied Davis’ motion. Davis pled guilty conditioned on his right to appeal the district court’s denial of his motion to suppress.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Shepherd, J.)

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