An old court case in Arizona has resulted in efforts to pass a new law that would give police more power to make traffics stops. In 2011, a man contested his drunk driving conviction because he believed that the officer did not have reasonable suspicion to pull him over. When the facts of the case were examined, it was learned that the officer made the stop because the motorist’s “Liddy light” was burned out.
The court held that this was not a sufficient reason to stop the man and begin a DUI investigation, especially since all of his other lights were in working order. Liddy lights are the light that appears in the middle of brake lights on the rear of the vehicle. In some cars it appears at the base of the rear window, while in others it may appear in the middle directly between the two brake lights.
Legislators wanted to revisit this issue because they felt that police should have the power to pull someone over if this light was not working properly. The new law proposed would allow police to stop motorists if any of the tail lights were not functioning. Police would give warnings on the first stop, and then issue tickets if the issues were not resolved.
What does this mean for you?
If this new law passes, it will be even easier for law enforcement to have the power it needs to pull you over and see if there are any signs that allow them to begin a drunk-driving investigation. Should you find yourself stopped by police, you need to take action to protect your rights.
Remember that the police are trained to obtain evidence and statements that make it difficult for you to defend yourself against their allegations. If you answer their questions, you will be giving them the information they need to eventually obtain a conviction later down the line.
After you have been arrested, your first action should be contacting an experienced criminal defense attorney to begin building a strategy that helps you protect your future. Your attorney will discuss all of the possible options with you, and will ensure that you receive a fair trial.