Basically yeah. There’s something called a “flight charge.” The prosecutor can put in evidence that the defendant fled from the crime scene and have the judge instruct the jury that flight can be used as evidence of guilt:
*Originally posted by Ranchoth *
**An odd little legal question…
In the U.S. judicial system, if the defendant was fleeing from the police when he was arrested, can that be noted during his trial?
Of course it can. However, if the only probable cause for detaining the subject was because he ran then it would get thrown out long before it got to trial. It may be used as part of the totallity of the circumstances. ]
The standard to briefly detain a suspect is not “probable cause,” but the Terry v. Ohio standard of “reasonable, articulable suspicion.”
Flight from officers can create a reasonable, articulable suspicion. Consistent with the decision in Florida v. Royer, a person, when approached by police, has the right to ignore their queries and go about his business. Headlong flight, according to the court, is the precise opposite of “going about one’s business.”
While such flight does not itself prove criminal activity, the whole purpose of Terry is to affirm the fact that police may detain people to resolve ambiguities in conduct. The explicit risk that officers may stop innocent people is accepted, with the caveat that if, during the brief, investigative stop, police do not learn facts rising to the level of probable cause, the detained person must be allowed to go about his business.
I was on a jury in a murder trial. The killer had been ID at the scene and the police went to his apt building. He saw the cops and fled. He broke into an occupied apt and was then captured.
All of this was brought up at trial including testomny of a very scared apt dweler.
Before anyone asks, guilty 2nd degree