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Secrets of the Texas Criminal Justice System and Your Rights
If you were given a speeding or reckless driving ticket, you may be tempted to simply pay the fine and move on. However, traffic violations can have serious consequences. A speeding ticket could add points to your driving record and lead to increased insurance costs.
Reach out to an experienced attorney to discuss the legal options available in your case. Depending on the circumstances, a skilled criminal defense attorney may be able to challenge the accuracy of speed reading instruments in Lubbock and fight for a positive resolution to your charges.
How Accurate are Radar and LIDAR?
Most judges and juries assume radar instruments are accurate. However, that is contingent upon the officer properly maintaining the speed reading instrument and keeping records of all calibration and maintenance. An officer needs to make sure to report any issues and have the instrument checked by a technician to ensure accuracy.
Notably, it is the state’s burden to prove that the speed tracking instruments were used properly and worked correctly. The purpose of the defense attorney is to hold the state to their burden of proof.
A radar reading carries a lot of weight with judges and juries, and it is often difficult to convince them that radar technology does not give an accurate reading of a driver’s speed. However, there may still be defenses available.
In some cases, a Lubbock defense attorney may be able to subpoena records to see if the speed reading instruments were properly calibrated. Whether an officer used radar or LIDAR, the instrument should be calibrated regularly to ensure its accuracy. An attorney could obtain the calibration logs of the instrument used to capture the speed of the vehicle to make sure it was properly tested and maintained. If the prosecutor does not prove the radar was calibrated appropriately, that brings into question the allegation that the car was speeding.
Questioning an Officer’s Training
In some cases, an attorney may challenge the officer’s training for operating the radar. A defense attorney could obtain records of the police officer’s training, including the manual and reports for every class the officer took. They could also request proof of the officer’s certification. If they successfully completed a class, they should have a certificate to prove it. It is not enough to have simply attended a class; the officer must have successfully completed it.
At trial, the attorney could cross-examine the officer to see if they applied their training appropriately when they clocked the defendant’s speed. After reviewing the documentation, they could compare the officer’s training to the way they actually conducted the traffic stop based on video evidence.
Operator error is common enough that a defense attorney should look for it in every case. For example, there might be interference in the officer’s LIDAR or radar reading. Interference could be caused by a wind storm, sand storm, or nearby traffic.
Additionally, it is possible an officer measured the speed of the wrong vehicle. When there is heavy traffic, the officer’s speed reading instruments may not be focusing on the vehicle the officer believes they are targeting.
Reach Out to a Skilled Lubbock Traffic Attorney
If you received a speeding ticket, you should carefully consider your legal options. There may be strong defenses available in your case. Depending on the circumstances, a skilled Lubbock attorney may be able to challenge the accuracy of speed reading instruments or the officer’s training.
To discuss your situation and begin building a credible defense, call today and schedule a consultation.