Where were you stopped?
How were you stopped?
Also consider the officer's demeanor when he stopped you. Did the officer display a weapon, use a harsh or accusatory one of voice, order you to stop or open your hands, block your path with his body or police vehicle, physically touch you, tell you that you are a suspect in a crime, or keep your personal property? If you answered yes to any of these questions, the courts are more likely to find that you were not a party to a consensual stop, but one that required some level of suspicion.
Did the officer attempt to block you or prevent you from leaving? If he did, the encounter likely rose to the level of a detention. If not, simply ask the officer if you are free to go. If you are, you may terminate the encounter. If you are not, the officer must have some basis to detain you.
Why were you stopped?
Do you feel as though you can freely walk away from the officer?
One factor the courts will look at in determining whether you were a party to an consensual encounter is whether a reasonable person in your situation would have believed he or she was free to go. The court will look at such factors as whether the officer physically blocked any escape paths, whether he retained your identification, whether there was any physical touching by the officer.
If you were involved in a Level II or Level III stop and you don't believe it was justified, contact ADM Legal Defense to discuss your case.