Lansing Man Charged for Not Showing I.D. to Police

By: Fay Li Email
By: Fay Li Email

"Get over it and get back to work fighting real crime," said David Riddle.

Riddle is taking up a fight with Lansing police and the city attorney's office and he's not holding back when it comes to voicing his criticisms. The trouble started the night of February 15th.

"I just wanted some quiet time, and came out to sit in my car."

He says he was sitting in his car in his driveway when a police officer walked up and demanded to see his I.D.

"I pretty much ignored him and asked him if it was a slow crime day," Riddle said.

Riddle refused to show his I.D. The officer eventually left, but that's not the end of story. 10 days later, Riddle received a warrant for his arrest. He's been charged with a misdemeanor of resisting an officer. From there, he pled not guilty, went to the pre-trial hearing this week and now he's waiting for a jury trial.

"I didnt' do anything wrong, I was sitting at home in my own drive way, minding my own business," Riddle said.

When do you have to show your I.D.? The answer can be complicated. We spoke to some attorneys to get opinions. Some say you don't have an obligation to respond if there's nothing going on and you're simply sitting in a non-moving car. Others say you should always identify yourself at the request of an officer. However, the consensus is police have a right to investigate should they have a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity.

Riddle says a similar charge was filed against him about five years ago. That time, he pled guilty but this time, he says he'll fight it to the end.

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  • by Jack Location: Lansing on Apr 13, 2013 at 03:03 AM
    Here's the question, why was the cop there? If he was there investigating a crime, fine. However, the cop has no right to come onto private property and tell you to show him your ID for no reason. He must have reasonable suspicion. Someone sitting in their car is not going to cut it. Also, it is unlawful, maybe not illegal but unlawful, for the police officer to come onto his property without having a warrant to search or arrest. The police officer should be charged with trespassing if he did not have a reasonable suspicion of a crime taking place. Someone give this guy a medal. Know your civil rights. He doesn't have to have a license on him or for the car or even have the car registered. He is on private property. It is always better to comply with police but it isn't always right.
  • by TLJ Location: Lansing on Apr 12, 2013 at 01:10 AM
    Lansing has a city ordinance that you can be taken to jail if you are not carrying ID. He's lucky he was only charged and not taken to jail. Like many have already stated, the man's behavior seemed suspicious in the first place. Everyone complains that the police aren't there when they need them, but when they are checking suspicious behavior we're up in arms. Is it really such a big deal to show your ID? This situation was escalated because the man decided to be a jerk about it. That officer was doing his job. If a crime would have been committed everyone would be laying blame on the officer for not doing enough.
  • by Todd Location: Lansing on Apr 10, 2013 at 10:26 PM
    I hope that officer gets fired.
  • by Jim Location: Lansing on Apr 10, 2013 at 05:33 PM
    There are about 100 YouTube videos showing exactly how this turns out. Unless you're made aware that you're being detained for being suspected of a crime, there is NO legal reason to be expected to produce identification to the police. Having the police ask you a question is not detainment. By leaving the scene, the officer conceded there was no suspicion of a crime taking place due to removing himself/herself from the scene. It takes all of 10 seconds of doing a Google search to find out the very public legal ruling on this matter. This is an incredible waste of resources and will end up making the Lansing Police look like they are not aware of the law. This is a cut-and-dry example of an officer not knowing the law while trying to enforce it.
  • by Lisa on Apr 9, 2013 at 08:53 AM
    Sounds like a situation where someone might not even have their ID on them - just sayin'
  • by Anonymous on Apr 9, 2013 at 04:08 AM
    Oh no... I ran his plates... it's the RIDDLER... call BATMAN!!!
  • by Grant Location: Lansing on Apr 8, 2013 at 09:32 AM
    I know this man, he is a good person. He probably stepped outside and sat in the car for some peace and quiet, as he has two teenaged sons.
  • by Karen Location: Lansing on Apr 7, 2013 at 04:16 PM
    Has anyone ever heard of Ted Bundy? This man ran around impersonating a cop, and raped and killed women. So the cop "WALKED" up to the car, if Mr. Riddle wasn't doing anything illegal then there was no reason for the cop to be there asking for ID. I understand suspicious behavior, but suspicious to who? Since when is some one sitting in a car suspicious? I would think an officer harassing such an individual would be the suspicious one.
  • by Gary Location: Lansing on Apr 6, 2013 at 07:27 AM
    Legend, I think (but am not sure) that if a cop runs a license plate number and the name of the owner comes up, they can then check a database and see the driver's license photo. That would explain it. I am not sure if this is the case, because I do not know what computers and software the police in Lansing use.
  • by REN Location: Lansing on Apr 6, 2013 at 07:15 AM
    Though Riddle is not legally bound to provide ID, he should have since he has been through this before, and it did not work out well. The officer could/should have told Riddle the reason is to verify he is not stealing the car, not caseing the house, or stalking, or whatever. ALL of which would have taken 1 or 2 minutes to verify. Then give Riddle the option of producing ID in the driveway, or downtown. The officer should have dealt with the situation immediately, not wait 10 days to do it second hand. Since things have gotten out of control,fight it, Riddle, fight it.
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