Judged by the Sum of Our Actions? The Relevance of Non-Party Behavior in State v. Mello

BY Sara B. Milstein

Part I of this Recent Development lays out the issue of first impression in North Carolina and critically analyzes how the majority decision in the court of appeals, affirmed by the state supreme court, came to its holding. This section also analyzes the dissent’s arguments and observes underlying tensions in the opinion that reveal greater insight into the dissent’s position. Part II examines background Fourth Amendment case law by order of magnitude, first looking at searches and seizures, and then at investigative stops and their progeny. Part III reintroduces Mello through the lens of broader Fourth Amendment law on investigative stops and suggests that the majority view in Mello is both reasonable and compatible with precedent. This part will also suggest that Mello could be conceived narrowly and only when police suspect an individual of engaging in a transaction crime.


DOWNLOAD PDF | 90 N.C. L. Rev. Addendum 41 (2011)