from a judgment and an order of the circuit court for Fond du
Lac County No. 2012CF90: DALE L. ENGLISH, Judge. Affirmed.
Neubauer, C.J., Reilly, P.J., and Gundrum, J.
Michel L. Wormian appeals from a judgment of conviction for
ninth offense operating while intoxicated (OWI). Wormian was
stopped by police after he walked away from the scene of an
accident. Wormian argues that all evidence obtained from him
should have been suppressed and that the court erred in the
imposition of his fine. We affirm.
On February 14, 2012, at 8:00 p.m., Fond du Lac County
Sheriff's Deputy James Pfeiffer responded to a call about a
truck in a ditch. Upon arrival, Pfeiffer observed a truck
that had crossed the center line, went through a driveway,
and crashed into a ditch. Weather was not a factor. Pfeiffer
observed Wormian walking away from the scene. Pfeiffer
activated his patrol lights and pulled his squad car in front
of Wormian, blocking Wormian's path. Pfeiffer asked
Wormian if he was the driver of the truck, how the accident
occurred, and if Wormian was injured. Wormian replied that he
was the driver, that he had fallen asleep while driving, and
that he was not injured. Wormian's eyes were glassy and
Pfeiffer smelled alcohol. Wormian said he drank a
"king" can of beer. Pfeiffer identified Wormian by
his driver's license and told Wormian to get in the squad
car so they could return to the scene of the accident.
Wormian made no objection and rode in the backseat of the
Pfeiffer checked Wormian's driving record and learned
that Wormian's license was revoked, he had eight prior
OWI convictions, was on extended supervision, and had a blood
alcohol content limit of .02. Pfeiffer administered field
sobriety tests. Wormian failed the tests, and Pfeiffer placed
Wormian under arrest. Wormian then told Pfeiffer that he had
purchased and drank the "king" can of beer from
Kwik Trip after the crash. Pfeiffer stated surveillance from
the Kwik Trip would be pulled to verify Wortman's claim,
to which Wormian responded that he had lied and apologized.
At no time did Pfeiffer recite Miranda warnings to
Wormian moved to suppress the statements he made at the scene
of his arrest. Wormian claimed that he was in custody
beginning when Pfeiffer pulled up in front of him to block
his path and that any statements made after this point were
statements made in custody without Miranda warnings
and should be suppressed. The circuit court found that
Wormian was not in custody and that Pfeiffer had both
reasonable suspicion to stop and probable cause to arrest.
Wormian thereafter pled no contest to OWI, ninth offense, and
received a ten-year prison sentence and a fine of
of Evidence and Statements Made Prior to Arrest
Wormian argues that the activation of the squad lights, the
blocking of his path by the squad car, the invitation that he
get into the back of the squad car, and the taking of his
driver's license all equate to Wormian being in custody
and therefore unlawfully arrested. We disagree as all of the
officer's actions were performed as part of an
investigatory stop rather than a custodial arrest.
The Fourth Amendment protects against unreasonable searches
and seizures. We recognize two types of seizures: an
investigatory or Terry stop and an arrest. State v.
Young, 2006 WI 98, ¶¶20, 22, 294 Wis.2d 1, 717
N.W.2d 729; see also WIS. STAT. § 968.24
(2015-16). An investigatory stop that involves
temporary questioning is a minor infringement on personal
liberty, and is constitutional if supported by reasonable
suspicion that a crime has been committed. Young,
294 Wis.2d 1, ¶20. "Reasonable suspicion requires
that a police officer possess specific and articulable facts
that warrant a reasonable belief that criminal activity is
afoot." Id., ¶21. Whether the reasonable
suspicion standard is met is determined by considering the
facts known to the officer at the time the stop occurred,
together with rational inferences and inferences drawn by
officers in light of policing experience and training.
See State v. Washington, 2005 WI.App. 123, ¶16,
284 Wis.2d 456, 700 N.W.2d 305; see also State v.
Seibel, 163 Wis.2d 164, 183, 471 N.W.2d226 (1991).
A formal arrest, in contrast, "is a more permanent
detention that typically leads to 'a trip to the station
house and prosecution for crime, '" and requires
probable cause to suspect that a crime has been committed.
Young, 294 Wis.2d 1, ¶22 (citation omitted). We
determine whether a person has been arrested by questioning
whether a "reasonable person in the defendant's
position would have considered himself or herself to be
'in custody, ' given the degree of restraint under
the circumstances." State v. Swanson, 164
Wis.2d 437, 447, 475 N.W.2d 148 (1991), overruled on
other grounds by State v. Sykes, 2005 WI 48, ¶27,
279 Wis.2d 742, 695 N.W.2d 277.
In State v. Quartana,213 Wis.2d 440, 570 N.W.2d 618
(Ct. App. 1997), we addressed the propriety of an
investigatory stop under a similar factual scenario. There,
Quartana lost control of his vehicle, drove into a ditch,
left the accident scene, and walked home. Id. at
443-44. After arriving on the scene of the accident and
determining that Quartana was the owner of the vehicle, an
officer went to Quartana's home to inquire about the
accident. Id. at 444. Quartana admitted to the
officer that he was driving at the time of the accident.
Id. The officer collected Quartana's
driver's license, noted bloodshot and glassy eyes and the
odor of intoxicants, and drove ...