WEAVING Case Law Summary
Did the offcier show specific and articulable facts for the stop?An officer must show specific articulable facts for reasonable suspicion to justify a traffic stop and not just make a conclusory statement that a defendant was violating a traffic law. Ford v. State, 158 S.W.3d 488, 493 (Tex. Crim. App. 2005). Mere opinions are ineffective substitutes for specific, articulable facts in a reasonable suspicion analysis. Id.
How did Defendant swerve or weave?Texas courts have routinely held that a vehicle crossing into another lane does not necessarily provide probable cause for the seizure. See, e.g, Fowler v. State, 266 SW3d 498 (Tex.App.--Fort Worth 2008). Many other courts have reached the same conclusion under similar facts. See, e.g.,Hernandez v. State, 983 S.W.2d 867, 871 (Tex. App.--Austin 1998, pet. ref'd)(movement must contain some element of unsafety when a vehicle drifts into another lane for probable cause); State v. Huddleston, 164 S.W.3d 711, 713-14 (Tex. App.--Austin 2005, no pet.)(holding officer lacked reasonable suspicion of traffic violation when he saw car slowly drift over fog line by a few inches five times over five to six miles while traveling one to eight miles per hour under speed limit); Eichler v. State, 117 S.W.3d 897, 898 (Tex. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 2003, no pet.) (holding no reasonable suspicion when car crossed line between middle and fast l
Was the movement made unsafely?See the above case law. The officer must state is specific and articulate facts how the movement was unsafe. See also Texas Transportation Code Section 545.060 for the definition of the traffic violation. 545.060(a)(2) states one may not move from the lane unless that movement can be made safely. It's not illegal if it doesn't trigger the specific case law above. It's not illegal if there's not enough information and it was not made unsafely.