Supreme Court: Arrest by volunteer reserve deputy constitutionally unreasonable

Politics - Government

NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The state Supreme Court has found non-commissioned officers cannot arrest someone for a misdemeanor crime. The court issued the ruling in regards to a case involving Roy Thompson, a non-commissioned reserve deputy with the Torrance County Sheriff’s Office. Thompson was in a marked patrol vehicle in 2014 when he claimed a truck nearly hit him. Thomspon followed the driver home and told her to stay put until a commissioned deputy arrived. The woman challenged it.


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The District Court determined that counted as an illegal arrest and suppressed the evidence. The Appeals Court overturned the decision, saying reserve deputies can make arrest in the interest of public safety but in its ruling, the Supreme Court sided with the District Court saying while the state does have an interest in maintaining highway safety, that did not apply in this case because the driver was already at home and reiterating the law requiring only commissioned salaried deputies to make arrests for misdemeanor motor vehicle-related offenses.

To read the decision, visit nmonesource.com/nmos/nmsc/en/item/518900/index.do.

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