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United States v. Englehart

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

January 27, 2016

United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellant
v.
Brent F. Englehart, Defendant - Appellee

Submitted November 20, 2015

Page 1035

Appeal from United States District Court for the District of Nebraska - Omaha.

For United States of America, Plaintiff - Appellant: John Higgins, U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, District of Nebraska, Omaha, NE.

Brent F. Englehart, Defendant - Appellee, Pro se, Arcadia, FL.

For Brent F. Englehart, Defendant - Appellee: John William Gallup, Sr., Omaha, NE.

Before RILEY, Chief Judge, BEAM and KELLY, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 1036

BEAM, Circuit Judge.

The United States appeals the district court's grant of Brent Englehart's motion to suppress in this criminal action. For the reasons stated herein, we reverse.

I. BACKGROUND

First and notably, all parties involved in this case to-date, including the district court, believed they were " flying blind" to some degree, in that the entirety of the factual record was based on only a visual, soundless, recording of the encounter between Omaha Police Officer Liebe and Englehart, along with the officers' testimony and written reporting subsequent to the stop and interview. The district court, understandably, found itself somewhat hindered by this fact. The recording submitted with the record on appeal, however, has audio. Therefore, the timing of the stop, the sequence of questions and reactions between Englehart and Officer Liebe, and all other necessary objective observations have been viewed and documented by this court. That said, with a few key highlights or distinctions, the facts relied upon by the magistrate judge and district court closely track the encounter between Officer Liebe and Englehart. Below, we recite the previously relied-upon facts, altering or supplementing where necessary to accurately portray the encounter.

On June 29, 2014, Officer Liebe observed Englehart operating a Chevy Avalanche, traveling westbound on Interstate 80 ...


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