United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division
TIMOTHY C. BATTEN, SR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
case comes before the Court on Magistrate Judge Linda T.
Walker's Final Report and Recommendation (the
“R&R”)  which recommends denying
Defendant Gino Shuler's motion  to suppress
evidence. Shuler has filed objections to the R&R .
March 11, 2015, Shuler was indicted with one count of
conspiracy, five counts of stealing money of the United
States, and five counts of aggravated identity theft. Shuler
seeks to suppress evidence collected and seized by the police
when he was arrested after a traffic stop for following too
closely. The facts of the case are not disputed and the Court
adopts the facts as set forth in the R&R. Shuler objects
to two of the conclusions reached by the magistrate judge.
Legal Standard on Review of a Magistrate Judge's
district judge has a duty to conduct a “careful and
complete” review of a magistrate judge's R&R.
Williams v. Wainwright, 681 F.2d 732, 732 (11th Cir.
1982) (per curiam) (quoting Nettles v. Wainwright,
677 F.2d 404, 408 (5th Cir. Unit B 1982)). This review may
take different forms, however, depending on whether there are
objections to the R&R. A district judge must “make
a de novo determination of those portions of the [R&R] to
which objection is made.” 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)(C); see also Jeffrey S. v. State Bd. of
Educ., 896 F.2d 507, 512 (11th Cir. 1990) (A judge must
“give fresh consideration to those issues to which
specific objection has been made by a party.”). Those
portions of the R&R to which no objection is made need
only be reviewed for clear error. Macort v. Prem,
Inc., 208 F. App'x 781, 784 (11th Cir. 2006) (per
curiam) (quoting Diamond v. Colonial Life & Accident
Ins., 416 F.3d 310, 315 (4th Cir. 2005)).
filing objections must specifically identify those findings
objected to. Frivolous, conclusive or general objections need
not be considered by the district court.”
Nettles, 677 F.2d at 410 n.8. “This rule
facilitates the opportunity for district judges to spend more
time on matters actually contested and produces a result
compatible with the purposes of the Magistrates Act.”
Id. at 410.
district judge also has discretion to decline to consider
arguments that were not raised before the magistrate judge.
Williams v. McNeil, 557 F.3d 1287, 1292 (11th Cir.
2009). Indeed, a contrary rule “would effectively
nullify the magistrate judge's consideration of the
matter and would not help to relieve the workload of the
district court.” Id. (quoting United
States v. Howell, 231 F.3d 615, 622 (9th Cir. 2000)).
conducting a complete and careful review of the R&R, the
district judge “may accept, reject, or modify”
the magistrate judge's findings and recommendations. 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C); Williams, 681 F.2d at
732. The district judge “may also receive further
evidence or recommit the matter to the magistrate judge with
instructions.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C).
Shuler's Objections to the R&R
objects to two of the conclusions reached by the magistrate
judge in the R&R. Specifically, Shuler objects to the
conclusion that his conduct or his brother's conduct
during the traffic stop gave rise to a suspicion of illegal
activity. He also objects to the conclusion that Sergeant
Brett Newman's investigation beyond the scope of the
traffic violation did not unreasonably prolong the duration
of the stop. As such, the Court will consider these questions
Shuler's and Maurice's Conduct Gave Rise to a
Reasonable Suspicion of Illegal Activity
Court agrees with the magistrate judge that the conduct of
Shuler and his brother, Maurice, gave rise to a suspicion of
Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1, 20 (1968), an
officer's actions during a traffic stop must be
“reasonably related in scope to the circumstances which
justified the interference in the first place.”
“Furthermore, the duration of the traffic stop must be
limited to the time necessary to effectuate the purpose of
the stop.” United States v. Purcell, 236 F.3d
1274, 1277 (11th Cir. 2001) (emphasis omitted). “The
traffic stop may not last ‘any longer than necessary to
process the traffic violation' unless there is
articulable suspicion of other illegal activity.”
Id. (quoting United States v. Holloman, 113
F.3d 192, 196 (11th Cir. 1997)).
is incorrect in arguing that the magistrate judge
“[r]ejected” the argument that some of
Shuler's behavior could have been the result of normal
nervousness or his normal behavior.  at 2. The
magistrate judge stated, and the Court agrees, that
“while individually each of these facts can be
explained by innocent behavior and would not be enough to
satisfy the reasonable suspicion standard, collectively under
Eleventh Circuit law, they justify Sergeant Newman's
investigation.”  at 21. In fact, on review, a
court “may not consider each fact only in isolation,
and reasonable suspicion may exist even if each fact
‘alone is ...