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Is there such thing as a "Bogus" stop?

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  • Is there such thing as a "Bogus" stop?

    On a slow night, my favorite thing to do is stop cars for out license plate lights, obstructed plates, failure to signal, swerving, etc. I have told other Officers this and they said its BS traffic stops. How can there be a BS stop? If its a good stop, why not fish for other things like drugs and warrants. No one said you have to cite every car you stop. I've had some of my best arrests from missing driver side mirrors and out plate lights.

  • #2
    Certain violations I refer to as bull**** or chicken ****. That doesn't mean that are bogus stops they are just cheesy violations.

    Tag lights for example I rarely, as almost never, stop for that unless I need PC. Now other people at my agency not only stop for it, they write $113 tickets for it which is bull**** in my opinion.
    Last edited by Mrpulo; 12-20-2015, 04:54 AM.

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    • #3
      I got stopped several nights ago & written for no license plate light. I won't call it "bogus" but will say IMO, it was BS as the time & location hardly seemed "suspicious, as it was within 5 miles of my home & my license showed that.
      I will say I think some LEOs profile vehicles, which I think this deputy did but I'd be curious what the OP is thinking of when he says "bogus" stop?

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      • #4
        I guess bogus is not the word I'm looking for. Bull**** fits the bill better. Ive had many people yell at me for stopping them for plate lights or turn signals. I usually tell them they are in violation of the motor vehicle code and they roll their eyes and calm down. Working in a square mile village on a Sunday night can be very slow if you are selective for your traffic stops. I know a lot of Officers who do the same, and I know others who give me ****. Doesn't bother me as I am stopping only for PC to get into the vehicle.

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        • #5
          Your last sentence right there is where you are going to get into trouble. You might want to redact it and get with someone who can explain WHY that's not how it works. Or, make sure you have good legal coverage....
          Now go home and get your shine box!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Profisher View Post
            Doesn't bother me as I am stopping only for PC to get into the vehicle.
            I would say that once I stop a vehicle for a minor equipment violation and it turns into something else, it justifies enforcement of minor equipment violations.

            “This life’s hard, but it’s harder if you’re stupid.”

            George V. Higgins--The Friends of Eddie Coyle

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            • #7
              Originally posted by CCCSD View Post
              Your last sentence right there is where you are going to get into trouble.
              Oh yeah. This kind of policing in Washington State gave us State v. Ladson, banning "pretextual traffic stops." Things settled down after a while, but for a couple years we had to go to great lengths to establish the purity of our motives when a traffic stop went beyond a ticket.

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              • #8
                What I meant was I use the PC for the stop, and then look for further PC for a vehicle search. (Plain sight, smell, consent, etc.) Prosecutor hasn't had an issue with it yet and all my charges get authorized.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by CCCSD View Post
                  Your last sentence right there is where you are going to get into trouble. You might want to redact it and get with someone who can explain WHY that's not how it works. Or, make sure you have good legal coverage....
                  I Concur with CCCSD 110%. You may want to update your profile; I for one would like to know if I’m responding to a colleague or someone with an alternative agenda.

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                  • #10
                    I am honestly curious about this. Are you saying in Washington you cannot stop a vehicle for a minor violation and then investigate further if you smell an odor of marijuana, or get consent to search for a drug investigation if you see pieces of chore boys in plain sight?

                    In Michigan State, I can only stop a vehicle if I observe a violation of the Motor Vehicle Code. Once the vehicle is stopped, I can ask for consent to search a vehicle. If they say no, I need to be able to smell, or see something (Marijuana, drugs, weapons, etc.) before I have probable cause to search without consent. Chore boys is not enough to search a vehicle without consent, but it would be enough for me to wait for a K9 unit for a reasonable amount of time to do a sniff around the vehicle. If the K9 alerted on the vehicle, I could then search without consent.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Profisher View Post
                      Doesn't bother me as I am stopping only for PC to get into the vehicle.
                      And therein rests the potential for a significant problem.

                      My agency used to be big on highway drug interdiction. If drug trafficking indicators were observed, rather than have to state what those indicators were in a report and make them public, the officer looked for a minor violation like a license plate light being out, or a cracked tail light and made the stop. Once contact was made, they would look for PC for a search and if none was found, asked for consent. If no contraband was found, they would dust the driver off and sent him on his way with a warning instead of a cite as a thank you for the inconvenience of the search.

                      The ACLU sued us to stop our program. Among other things, the alleged there never was a legal basis for the traffic stop in the first place. They based this charge on the fact that when a search that came up empty, we kicked the driver lose with no traffic citation issued. The claimed that if the traffic stop was really based on a legitimate traffic violation, we would have issued a citation.

                      Now, discretion has pretty much been eliminated by the ACLU when it comes to consent searches. if a someone gets stopped for a minor violation, a consent search ensues and no contraband is found, they are almost guaranteed to receive a citation for that license plate light being out or broken tail light, if only to protect us from being falsely accused by the ACLU. That means we have to start writing a bunch of petty, C/S tickets and get a reputation for being a hard a** agency, or we cut back on interdiction efforts.
                      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Profisher View Post
                        On a slow night, my favorite thing to do is stop cars for out license plate lights, obstructed plates, failure to signal, swerving, etc. I have told other Officers this and they said its BS traffic stops. How can there be a BS stop? If its a good stop, why not fish for other things like drugs and warrants. No one said you have to cite every car you stop. I've had some of my best arrests from missing driver side mirrors and out plate lights.
                        Originally posted by Profisher View Post
                        I guess bogus is not the word I'm looking for. Bull**** fits the bill better. Ive had many people yell at me for stopping them for plate lights or turn signals. I usually tell them they are in violation of the motor vehicle code and they roll their eyes and calm down. Working in a square mile village on a Sunday night can be very slow if you are selective for your traffic stops. I know a lot of Officers who do the same, and I know others who give me ****. Doesn't bother me as I am stopping only for PC to get into the vehicle.
                        I believe you are the officer that had a City Council member tell you to knock off stopping so many cars

                        Even though you stated your Chief told the Council member to "fly a kite"----------I think these posts shows a bit more of the story.

                        If you keep bucking the system in your small town you are going to have a very long (or extremely short) careerc

                        Personally I liked equipment stops..............they are far from "Bogus"............ BUT really if you are writting A LOT of citations for those types of violations you are going to become known as "THAT GUY" & that reputation will follow you where ever you go.

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                        • #13
                          Fisher,

                          You are way to new to understand this I guess. Good luck. You're going to have an interesting time...

                          Oh, by the way: NO! You can't wait for a K9. You are so ignorant of current SCOTUS decisions and legality that you are a train wreck waiting to happen.

                          I suggest YOU do some studying.
                          Last edited by CCCSD; 12-20-2015, 12:35 PM.
                          Now go home and get your shine box!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by L-1 View Post
                            And therein rests the potential for a significant problem.

                            My agency used to be big on highway drug interdiction. If drug trafficking indicators were observed, rather than have to state what those indicators were in a report and make them public, the officer looked for a minor violation like a license plate light being out, or a cracked tail light and made the stop. Once contact was made, they would look for PC for a search and if none was found, asked for consent. If no contraband was found, they would dust the driver off and sent him on his way with a warning instead of a cite as a thank you for the inconvenience of the search.

                            The ACLU sued us to stop our program. Among other things, the alleged there never was a legal basis for the traffic stop in the first place. They based this charge on the fact that when a search that came up empty, we kicked the driver lose with no traffic citation issued. The claimed that if the traffic stop was really based on a legitimate traffic violation, we would have issued a citation.

                            Now, discretion has pretty much been eliminated by the ACLU when it comes to consent searches. if a someone gets stopped for a minor violation, a consent search ensues and no contraband is found, they are almost guaranteed to receive a citation for that license plate light being out or broken tail light, if only to protect us from being falsely accused by the ACLU. That means we have to start writing a bunch of petty, C/S tickets and get a reputation for being a hard a** agency, or we cut back on interdiction efforts.
                            I do understand what you are saying, but I have done what is described above multiple times. There are 10 exceptions to search without a search warrant. Consent is one of them. You also have probable cause with exigent circumstances. By Department Policy, I am required to write a citation for the traffic offense I stopped for If I lodge the driver or send up a warrant request to the prosecutor. That way if it goes to court, there is a paper trail.

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                            • #15
                              Good luck with that. You are going to make Case Law. And be hated for it for the rest of your life.

                              But do what you want. Ignore the advice of other, more EXPERIENCED cops...
                              Now go home and get your shine box!

                              Comment

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