Several of you have previously answered my forum topic regarding rural driveways meeting the public place element of a DWI.
It seems I have another wrinkle in that case. The SO deputy who made the arrest encountered the defendant based entirely on suspicious vehicle grounds. He saw the stationary car in the defendant's driveway and turned on his lights, causing the defendant to put the car in gear and drive over his own chainlink gate.
Upon review I don't think we can justify community caretaking because there was zero indication of distress or suspicious activity. The defendant was simply sitting in his running car, with the lights on (it was dark out), in the portion of his driveway that spans the ditch.
However, upon review of the dashcam I realized the defendant's third (highmount) brake light was out. But the SO deputy never mentions it or gave any indication he noticed it.
Could we justify the detention for a faulty third brake light even though the deputy never notices or mentions it? It seems State v. Defranco might allow it though it addresses PC for an arrest rather than RS for a detention.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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