Skip to content
Name: People v. Patterson
Case #: B143582
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 5
Opinion Date: 09/25/2001
Subsequent History: Rev. granted 12/19/01. Rev. DISMISSED & cause remanded 5/1/02. Depublished.

Police were watching Buckner, who was a suspect in a robbery/murder. Appellant was driving a vehicle in which Buckner was a passenger when police were instructed to make a traffic stop of the vehicle, which they did for a missing rear view mirror. Upon approaching the vehicle, officers smelled marijuana. Appellant consented to a search of the vehicle and was arrested for possession of the less than one ounce of marijuana seized by officers. Although he was not yet a suspect in the robbery, he was interviewed by homicide detectives when he reached the police station. After talking with detectives for six hours, he gave a full confession. The appellate court here affirmed the denial of appellant’s suppression motion. Police had probable cause to believe that appellant had committed a misdemeanor. Under Atwater v. City of Lago Vista (2001) 532 U.S. 318, the Fourth Amendment does not prohibit a custodial arrest or transport to the police station for a fine-only misdemeanor offense. Therefore appellant’s confession could not be suppressed on that ground.