I just read a story in which one man described his adventures in traffic court after being cited for speeding. The alleged speeder was cited for doing 40 mph while driving in a 25 mph zone on his way home from work. Since this was his first time receiving a speeding ticket, he said nothing at the time when he was stopped. Instead, he accepted the citation and went on his way. A few days later he remembered he was using Google’s My Tracks app on his Android phone and tracked his travels the night he was cited for speeding.
What he found from Google’s My Tracks GPS technology was that at no time was he speeding on any of the streets over which he had traveled. In fact, the data from Google Tracks verified the man’s claim that he drove his vehicle in a lawful manner. He proceeded to download the data and sat down and described the data so he could present his case in court.
On the day of his trial, he asked the officer a few questions. He learned that the officer couldn’t remember the last time he had training in using the radar gun, nor when the radar gun was last calibrated for accuracy and didn’t even know the model number of the unit. This alone helped build the man’s case. He next presented the data he collected from Google’s My Tracks showing that he was not speeding.
The judge ruled that the suspect was not guilty. Not because of the data collected by Google’s My Tracks, but by the officer’s admission to his lack of expertise in using the radar device. The judge also admitted that he was not familiar enough with GPS technology to rule solely on the data presented.
Now, before you try this defense on your own, here are a few tips that were passed on in the article. Don’t think that you can get off from a speeding ticket by data alone. It was the officer’s lack of evidence that set the speeder free, though I would venture a guess that the mans presentation didn’t hurt. I would also guess that this defense may not work in every jurisdiction throughout the U.S. This case was in California, which is noted for a very liberal interpretation of its laws. Your mileage may vary depending on where you live.
So what do you think?