232 F.3d 350 (3rd Cir. 2000)
Moreover, it is well established that officers are allowed to ask questions of anyone-and gun owners are no exception-without having any evidence creating suspicion.
Given that the original rationale in Terry for permitting frisks was to safeguard officers while they ask questions, a ruling in Valentine's favor would produce inexplicable results. We would be holding that while diligent officers would have questioned Valentine after receiving the tip, the officers were not permitted to frisk him, even though they encountered him late at night in a high-crime area known for shootings, and even though, unlike Terry, the officers had specific, reliable reasons for believing that he was armed. We do not think the Supreme Court's jurisprudence supports such a result.
As the Supreme Court noted in a case much like ours, an officer has â€œample reason to fear for his safetyâ€ while investigating a person reported to have a concealed weapon at 2:15 in the morning in a high-crime area.
This is third Circuit (case out of NJ) and not controlling here.In evaluating the totality of the circumstances, we must also take into account that Valentine and the two men with him immediately began walking away from the patrol car when it arrived. Walking away from the police hardly amounts to the headlong flight considered in Wardlow and of course would not give rise to reasonable suspicion by itself, even in a high-crime area, but it is a factor that can be considered in the totality of the circumstances. As the Supreme Court recently said, â€œnervous, evasive behavior is a pertinent factor in determining reasonable suspicion.â€