Posts tagged "Manha"

Commonwealth v. Manha (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-034-18)

NOTICE:  All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA, 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;   SJC-12342   COMMONWEALTH  vs.  ANTHONY F. MANHA.       Suffolk.     December 5, 2017. – February 28, 2018.   Present:  Gants, C.J., Lenk, Gaziano, Lowy, Budd, Cypher, & Kafker, JJ.     Constitutional Law, Search and seizure, Investigatory stop, Reasonable suspicion. Search and Seizure, Reasonable suspicion, Threshold police inquiry, Protective sweep. Threshold Police Inquiry.       Complaint received and sworn to in the South Boston Division of the Boston Municipal Court Department on July 10, 2012.   A pretrial motion to suppress evidence was heard by Ernest L. Sarason, Jr., J., and following transfer to the Central Division of the Boston Municipal Court Department, the case was tried before Tracey-Lee Jones, J.   After review by the Appeals Court, the Supreme Judicial Court granted leave to obtain further appellate review.     Leah Hook for the defendant. Cailin M. Campbell, Assistant District Attorney, for the Commonwealth.          BUDD, J.  Here we address the authority of the police to stop and perform a Terry-type search of a motor vehicle after an anonymous 911 caller reported that the driver of that vehicle threatened the caller, a fellow motorist, with a gun.  The driver, defendant Anthony F. Manha, appeals from a conviction of assault with a dangerous weapon.  The Appeals Court affirmed in an unpublished memorandum and order pursuant to its rule 1:28.  Commonwealth v. Manha, 91 Mass. App. Ct. 1105 (2017).  We granted the defendant’s application for further appellate review.  He claims that the police lacked probable cause to stop him and that, therefore, the pellet gun found subsequently in his vehicle should have been suppressed.  We conclude that, in these circumstances, the information that the police possessed gave them reasonable suspicion to stop and perform a protective sweep of the defendant’s motor vehicle, and that, given the officers’ safety concerns, reasonable suspicion was all that was required.  We therefore affirm the conviction. Background.  We present the facts as found by the motion judge.  On July 9, 2012, while on patrol, Trooper John Guest of the State police received a radio call of a then-ongoing 911 call from a motorist regarding a road rage incident.  According to the 911 caller, an individual in another motor vehicle had pointed a gun at her as she traveled southbound on Route 93 in Boston.  She described the gunman as a white male in […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - February 28, 2018 at 3:11 pm

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