William & Mary Journal of Race, Gender, and Social Justice


George M. Dery


This Article analyzes Kansas v. Glover, in which the Supreme Court ruled that an officer could stop a vehicle owned by a person having a revoked license on the assumption that the owner was currently driving the vehicle. This work examines the concerns created by Glover’s ruling. This Article asserts that, in creating its new rule enabling police to stop a motorist without first confirming his or her identity, the Court based its holding on the existence of two facts, thus effectively changing its traditional “totality of the circumstances” analysis for reasonable suspicion to a categorical rule. Further, Glover’s reasoning eroded Terry v. Ohio’s reasonable suspicion standard and discounted the motorist’s interests against seizures of the person, thus undermining Fourth Amendment rights. Finally, the Court, in adding a new element of “when the officer lacks information negating an inference” to Terry’s analysis, shifted the burden of proof for assessing the lawfulness of the seizure to the motorist. Glover therefore potentially imposes a daily burden on “thousands of innocent citizens” who happen to be borrowing a car.