|In the matter of Henderson vs. State, the 1st District Court of Appeal ruled as follows:
The 1st District Court of Appeal affirmed convictions for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, fleeing or attempting to elude an officer, and driving with a suspended license. The defendant argued the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress because the arresting police officer did not possess reasonable suspicion or probable cause to stop his vehicle pursuant to the fellow-officer rule, by denying his motion for judgment of acquittal since the state failed to prove constructive possession of a firearm. Though the court agreed with the defendant's argument regarding the lack of reasonable suspicion, the First District Court of Appeal affirmed the lower court on grounds that the defendant's act of fleeing or attempting to elude law enforcement officials obviated the requirement of determining whether there was reasonable suspicion or probable cause for the original attempt to stop. The 1st District Court of Appeal relied on Green v. State, 530 So. 2d 480 (Fla. 5th DCA 1988) & State v. McCune, 772 So. 2d 596, 597 (Fla. 5th DCA 2000), that happen to be factually similar, in arriving at their decision to affirm.
The district court also ruled the defendant failed to prove the circuit court erred as a matter of law by denying his motion for judgment of acquittal on the charge of felon in possession of a firearm. Because defendant was the sole occupant and driver of the auto when apprehended, he had exclusive possession of the firearm within the vehicle, regardless of the vehicle's ownership, and therefore his knowledge of the contraband & his capacity to maintain control of it was inferred.
This case summary was prepared by Michael Dye and Daniel Rosenberg. Mr. Dye and Mr. Rosenberg are attorneys located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. For more information, please visit their websites by clicking on the following links. Michael Dye florida criminal lawyer Daniel Rosenberg criminal lawyer
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