Speeding Tickets and How RADAR Works in Law Enforcement Settings

We have all seen a cop on the side of the road looking for speeders. In fact, we have all seen that cop and stood on our brake to slow down. What we are trying to do, when we see the cop and stand on our brake, is slow down before he can get our speed on his RADAR gun.

But what is RADAR and how does it work? RADAR is an acronym for RAdio Detection And Ranging. RADAR is inherently complicated. It uses a signal to detect the speed and intensity of movement. This can be the movement of precipitation, planes, boats and cars.

And when you see the cop on the side of the road using a RADAR gun, he is measuring speed of cars, including your car.

There are some legal quirks as to how law enforcement can use RADAR to measure speed. The first thing you have to realize is that the RADAR measures speed. That includes the speed of anything in sight.

Sometimes, signals emitted from street lights will read on the RADAR as well as heavy blowing rain. Fog or snow can interrupt an accurate reading using RADAR. Interestingly enough, when a cop points a RADAR gun down the street, the RADAR measures the speed of multiple cars.

This means that a RADAR reading indicating a speeding vehicle may be someone else’s vehicle and not yours. To counter this effect, law enforcement is supposed to visually estimate your speed and use the RADAR to “verify” the estimation.

This rarely happens.

Additionally, the RADAR is a machine whose calibration must be checked before and after it is used on your vehicle. This means the cop is supposed to check it before he uses the RADAR to “verify” your speed as well as after.

This rarely happens.

Cops who use RADAR are supposed to maintain a log which shows the reliability of the RADAR.

This rarely happens.

What can you do? If you have received a speeding ticket, you should call our firm. We can evaluate your situation and give you legal advice about how you should proceed with your case.

Keep in mind that speeding and use of RADAR is a precursor to stopping your car to make other arrests. Additionally, it is possible that if you can successfully defend against your speeding charge you might see subsequent charges dismissed. In other words, if you win your speeding case it is possible that any DWI, drug, or weapons charges could be dismissed.

If you were stopped for speeding and arrested or charged with another violation, such as DWI or a drug charge, you should also call our office immediately. Our office can attack your speeding charge and possibly get your subsequent charge dismissed.

Understanding how RADAR works is crucial to your defense. We are ready to help you. Contact us today.

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