State v. Hopper, 205 N.C. App. 175 (Jul. 6, 2010)

The trial court properly concluded that an officer had reasonable suspicion to believe that the defendant was committing a traffic violation when he saw the defendant driving on a public street while using his windshield wipers in inclement weather but not having his taillights on. The trial court’s conclusion that the street at issue was a public one was supported by competent evidence, even though conflicting evidence had been presented. The court noted that its conclusion that the officer correctly believed that the street was a public one distinguished the case from those holding that an officer’s mistaken belief that a defendant had committed a traffic violation is constitutionally insufficient to support a traffic stop.