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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:Austin Police Department Officer Zachary LaHood testified at a Feb. 16, 2006, suppression hearing. He stated that while responding to a daytime call about a collision, he noticed a black Toyota Camry sedan parked just off the highway at a rest area with a picnic table. In the evening, LaHood observed the same vehicle parked there. The next day, en route to another collision, he saw the “same vehicle parked in the same spot,” which raised his suspicion that the car might have been abandoned, stolen or broken down. After dark that evening, LaHood observed the same vehicle at the rest area. The rest area did not have any lighting, and except for one car, it was unoccupied. LaHood pulled over. As he parked his patrol car behind the car at the rest area, LaHood noticed that the dome light that had been activated in the parked car was turned off. As soon as he saw the dome light go out, he activated the overhead lights on his patrol car to conduct a stop. When the lights were on, he saw that there was a person inside the parked car. LaHood approached the car, introduced himself to Pamela Rose Franks, the driver, and explained that he was talking to her because he had observed her car at the rest area four times in the last 24 hours. LaHood was visibly upset: She was crying, her breathing was fast and shallow, and she appeared to be very anxious and nervous. At the outset, Franks was crying and upset, she asked the officer several times, “Can I just go?” He replied, “[N]o, you can’t go. You are upset. I want to find out why you are upset, what [is] wrong.” LaHood testified that from the moment of his first contact with Franks at the car door, “it became more and more apparent that she was becoming more anxious and agitated.” While he was talking to her, LaHood saw some unspecified “objects” in the back seat and floorboard of her car. He then asked Franks for her driver’s license. She stated that she had an identification card, but she did not have a driver’s license. Not wanting her to drive away without a driver’s license, LaHood asked Franks to step out of her car, and she complied. Then while speaking with the officer, Franks “had a ‘wardrobe malfunction’ and exposed one of her breasts.” LaHood told her to correct it. Officer Seago, a female officer seated in the patrol car, witnessed the incident and walked over toward LaHood and Franks. As Franks and Seago conversed at the rear of Franks’ car, LaHood began shining his flashlight on the back seat and driver’s seat of the car. Seeing this, Franks “bee-lined” toward the car, placing herself between LaHood and the driver’s side door. He asked her to return to the back of the car and she initially did so, but when the officer continued shining his flashlight inside her car, she again positioned herself in front of the driver’s side door, becoming more anxious. LaHood asked her again to stand back with the other officer. When LaHood looked inside Franks’ car this time, he saw possible drug paraphernalia, wadded up paper towels and packages of sexual lubricant on the car’s rear floorboard. Based on the lubricant and paper towels, he thought that it was possible that Franks was “running prostitution activities out of the vehicle.” LaHood planned to release Franks and issue a “field observation card” to her, but she could not drive from the scene, because Department of Public Safety records confirmed that her driver’s license had been suspended. Franks placed a telephone call to her husband to get a ride and arrange to remove her car from the rest area. LaHood testified that to prevent Franks from hurting herself or the officers, he tried to confirm that her car did not contain any weapons before allowing her to return to it. He thought that firearms or other weapons might have been in the car for two reasons: first, because Franks had already admitted to having suicidal thoughts; and second, because he had personally encountered loaded weapons in vehicles during prostitution stings, and he thought Franks’ car could have been used for prostitution activity. He proceeded to “frisk” the car for weapons. The “frisk,” he explained, was distinct from a search, because he did not “go into any containers or anything like that”; he was only “looking for a spot where a weapon could be placed,” such as under the seat or floor mat. During this “frisk,” LaHood looked at the front passenger seat and saw Franks’ large, unzipped purse, which he thought would easily conceal a handgun. Illuminated by his flashlight and on top of the purse was a pipe, commonly used to smoke marijuana, with marijuana residue on it. At that point, he determined that Franks would be arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia. Further search of Franks’ car after her arrest revealed a case in the pocket of the driver’s side door containing .7 grams of crack cocaine. Authorities subsequently indicted Franks for possession of cocaine. She filed a motion to suppress the evidence. After the district court denied the motion, Franks pleaded guilty. This appeal followed. HOLDING:Reversed and remanded. In her sole point of error, Franks contended that the court erred in denying her motion to suppress evidence, because the seizure and search was unreasonable and did not fall within the community-caretaking exception of the warrant requirement of the Fourth Amendment. The state contended that LaHood’s initial contact with Franks was not a detention but an encounter, that LaHood’s brief detention of Franks was justified by reasonable suspicion, and alternatively, that the detention was justified by LaHood’s exercise of his community-caretaking function. Franks argued that she was illegally seized by LaHood, because she was detained without a reasonable suspicion of involvement in criminal activity. A police officer, the court stated, may stop and briefly detain a person for investigative purposes if, under the totality of the circumstances, the officer has reasonable suspicion supported by articulable facts that the person detained is, has been or soon will be engaged in criminal activity. An investigative detention occurs when an individual is confronted by a police officer, yields to the officer’s display of authority and is temporarily detained for purposes of an investigation. Encounters are consensual interactions between citizens and police that do not require reasonable suspicion and do not implicate constitutional rights. Based on the chronology of events, the court concluded that the interaction between LaHood and Franks was an encounter that progressed to an investigative detention when her request to leave was refused. When LaHood spoke about first encountering Franks, the court found that he did not testify about specific facts leading him to suspect that Franks was, had been or soon would be engaged in criminal activity. LaHood did not inquire about Franks’ driver’s license until after he had refused her request to “just go.” Thus, considering the totality of these circumstances in the light most favorable to the trial court’s ruling, the court concluded that LaHood’s initial interaction with Franks was an encounter but his subsequent statement to Franks, “[N]o, you can’t go,” conveyed a message that she was not free to leave and constituted a detention. The court further concluded, based on the record, that when LaHood refused to allow Franks to leave, he did not have reasonable suspicion to detain her. Next, the court noted that under the community-caretaking exception to the Fourth Amendment and as part of their duty to “serve and protect” police officers “may stop and assist an individual whom a reasonable person � given the totality of the circumstances � would believe is in need of help.” The court, however, did not facts supporting a finding that justified LaHood’s refusal to let Franks leave the scene. OPINION:Law, C.J.; Law, C.J., and Patterson and Puryear, JJ.

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