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Jaguar57
07-03-2007, 11:46 AM
Just like the subject says.. How visible do you have to be as an officer (in car or out of car) while you run radar checking speeds?

Do you have to give a driver a reasonable amount of time to see you and correct their speed?

I have seen it both ways (depending on the agency) where officers will sit in the middle of the interstate and run radar to a few places here in town that the local police like to sit at where they are fairly obscure to see them.

Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?

Sorry if this topic has been beaten to death. I did try searching for an answer but didnt find one that fit the best. Thanks

CruiserClass
07-03-2007, 11:49 AM
Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?


:D Sure. Go tell the judge you were speeding and the meanie old policeman didn't give you a chance to see him and slow down before he stopped you. I think the judge will be very understanding:D

Thanks Mr. Obvious, you're a lifesaver.

OverCharged
07-03-2007, 11:50 AM
.. it would only be on a agency policy basis but for the most part hiding and trying to catch you is the idea so I have not heard of any kind of reasonable chance to stop already breaking the law rules though :D

grumpyirishman
07-03-2007, 11:57 AM
Don't have to be visible at all............:eek:

irishdep
07-03-2007, 12:44 PM
You can hide or you can sit right out in the open you'll still write as many or few tickets as you want. When officers hide people assume that it's a speed trap but if you're not speeding there is no trap. It then becomes an officer sitting idle waiting for a call saving the tax payers money on fuel.:D

jakflak
07-03-2007, 01:14 PM
Just like the subject says.. How visible do you have to be as an officer (in car or out of car) while you run radar checking speeds?

Not at all visible. When they invent a cloaking device, I'll be first in line to buy one.


Do you have to give a driver a reasonable amount of time to see you and correct their speed?

No. They're supposed to be driving the speed limit anyway.


Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?

No.

Jaguar57
07-03-2007, 01:34 PM
Please dont think I am trying to justify speeding or that I received a ticket for speed and I am trying to get out of it. Im just trying to understand the aspects on how different officers/agencies conduct their radar operations since I have seen different of examples of both techniques.

Thanks for your answers so far.

retired
07-03-2007, 02:00 PM
Unless it has changed, California requires that the prima facie speed limit is justified by an engineering and traffic survey conducted within seven years prior to the date of the alleged violation, and enforcement of the speed limit involves the use of radar or any other electronic device that measures the speed of moving objects. I believe that it is still seven years with one exception.:) :)

SgtCHP
07-03-2007, 02:44 PM
You have to be clear enough for the radar/lidar beam to do its work without disturbance from bushes, tree limbs, parked cars, telephone poles, etc. :cool:

All-in-all it is relatively difficult for an officer to completely hide from traffic to perform the duty. You may not be able to see him, but s/he can see you. :D

Also, traffic going in the opposite direction can usually see the officer; ergo, the officer is not hiding. :rolleyes:

RedRaider911
07-03-2007, 03:07 PM
Heck you won't see me. My car is parked out of view and i run laser outside of my car. All you might see of me is my head as i peek around a building. I know it seems like alot of trouble, but i love the look of suprise when you pull behind them.

pujolsfan146
07-03-2007, 06:01 PM
Just like the subject says.. How visible do you have to be as an officer (in car or out of car) while you run radar checking speeds?

Do you have to give a driver a reasonable amount of time to see you and correct their speed?

I have seen it both ways (depending on the agency) where officers will sit in the middle of the interstate and run radar to a few places here in town that the local police like to sit at where they are fairly obscure to see them.

Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?

Sorry if this topic has been beaten to death. I did try searching for an answer but didnt find one that fit the best. Thanks


I don't have to be visible at all. In fact I prefer to be totally invisible or hidden when I run radar. If another squad is in the area and I am hiding in a new spot I will send him a message to drive by my location. I will not tell him where I am at and I will see if he can locate me. If he drives by without seeing me then I know I did well.

I will not give anyone advanced warning when running radar. My goal is for them not to see me until I turn on the lightbar. One of the reasons I run radar is to catch drunk drivers. When I get ready to stop a speeding car I will also look for additional probable cause to put in the report so I will follow and watch the car for any other reasons to stop.

An officer "hiding" is a really bad reason to try and use in court to get off a ticket. I wouldn't even consider it because it simply won't fly.

jmb1055
07-03-2007, 06:11 PM
i dont understand the question i guess, what do you think speed limit signs are for , that is your warning. a ticket my follow if you do not obsereve.

grog18b
07-03-2007, 07:12 PM
"Up periscope"... We do enforcement via aircraft too. Plane flies so high it can't be seen. Answer is, obey the speed limit, and if you see someone running radar, he's not really running radar. He's trying to slow people down. There is a difference. In construction zones, we sit plainly visible to slow people down for the safety of the workers, and normally will only stop a violator that is going at a pretty good speed and does not slow down. Sometimes, for the safety of workers, it's better to be seen. There are other times when we run out of DOT trucks, when at a real problem area, and for enforcement.

Gene L
07-03-2007, 07:15 PM
State laws vary. In mine, you have to be visible for 500 feet.

1042 Trooper
07-03-2007, 07:41 PM
We had a cloaking device.

JonMcD1980
07-03-2007, 07:44 PM
We had a cloaking device.

LOL...I had a woman tell me once that she heard if they couldn't see the officer running radar, it fell under entrapment. That one's right up there with if the troopers not wearing his hat, the ticket will be dismissed.

NY Troop
07-03-2007, 07:47 PM
My favorite is using my trusty lawn chair with the hand held laser under an overpass. My chase cars are on a curve in the roadway so the unsuspecting motorist can't see them until it's too late. I've been thinking about building a tree stand in the wooded median to shoot laser from maybe wear some camo.

WARWAGON
07-03-2007, 07:54 PM
In Ga it's 500 (night or day) feet for ALL locals.
A state trooper can hide in a tree if he wants to.

1042 Trooper
07-03-2007, 07:57 PM
LOL...I had a woman tell me once that she heard if they couldn't see the officer running radar, it fell under entrapment. That one's right up there with if the troopers not wearing his hat, the ticket will be dismissed.
Or have you heard,
"If you stopped in the median, you can't write me!"
"You crossed the median. You can't do that"
"You have no authority here. Only the federal government does."
"You have to let me see it."
"You have to give me a speedometer check first."
"I'm from *insert state of choice* and you can't write me."

A world full of lawyers. And some even have law degrees too!

ignignokt373
07-03-2007, 08:13 PM
I would sit along side the roadway (major US Highway or Interstate that had some areas it was safe to pull off on the shoulder) monitoring traffic with folks zipping past me like they didn't even see me....or if they did not bothering to slow down. I would get this line once they were stopped:

"You can't write me because you didn't have your headlights/parking lights on." :rolleyes:

Nightshift va
07-03-2007, 08:25 PM
Just like the subject says.. How visible do you have to be as an officer (in car or out of car) while you run radar checking speeds?

Do you have to give a driver a reasonable amount of time to see you and correct their speed?

I have seen it both ways (depending on the agency) where officers will sit in the middle of the interstate and run radar to a few places here in town that the local police like to sit at where they are fairly obscure to see them.

Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?

Sorry if this topic has been beaten to death. I did try searching for an answer but didnt find one that fit the best. Thanks
We dont have to be visible at all for speeding violators. I cant believe people think they have some kind of right to be able to see an officer in plain view. The only requirement we have is to be able to have a valid tracking history of the violator vehicle. Wheter or not you see us is not any kind of defense. The problem is too many speeders are so used to officer descretion where the officers notice how a speeder slows down upon seeing them and not pulling them over because they finally slow down. Doesnt mean we "have" to though. Dont worry you aren't the only speeder out there that thinks that way. I hear it all the time in court.:cool:

Nightshift va
07-03-2007, 08:30 PM
My favorite is using my trusty lawn chair with the hand held laser under an overpass. My chase cars are on a curve in the roadway so the unsuspecting motorist can't see them until it's too late. I've been thinking about building a tree stand in the wooded median to shoot laser from maybe wear some camo.
Dude, thats hallarious. Thanks, I needed a good laugh. The funniest thing Ive seen the troopers do is use the Lidar laser and dress up like highway surveyors with chase cars on stand by, thats classic too.:cool:

redbird07
07-03-2007, 08:30 PM
Just like the subject says.. How visible do you have to be as an officer (in car or out of car) while you run radar checking speeds?

Do you have to give a driver a reasonable amount of time to see you and correct their speed?

I have seen it both ways (depending on the agency) where officers will sit in the middle of the interstate and run radar to a few places here in town that the local police like to sit at where they are fairly obscure to see them.

Is the fact that as an officer you were "hiding" while running radar a valid defense if someone decides to contest a ticket?

Sorry if this topic has been beaten to death. I did try searching for an answer but didnt find one that fit the best. Thanks

You are absolutely right. This subject has had the crap beat out of it. There are no rules for running radar/lidar other than these.

The officer must be certified, and the radar/lazer unit must be certified/calibrated.

We can hide in the median/behind trees/behind billboards/behind the bushes. We can also put our trunks up for concealment or use other vehicles to obstruct your view of us. We can hide off the roadway and then step out into the lanes of traffic and flag you over. We can park on the shoulder in the middle of the night with our lights off and stop you. The point is, as long as we're not breaking the law, we can do it. We can also write you for 1 mph over or 20 mph over. It doesnt matter if we are concealed or not, there are plenty of speeders in all situations. I have sat at night clearly visible and with my headlights on and nailed 15-20 mph over drivers. I have sat in broad daylight right off the roadway and got the same results as when I hide in the woods. I suggest you look up the many other threads where this topic has been covered. That way you'll get the answer to your questions without all the sarcasm.

redbird07
07-03-2007, 08:33 PM
LOL...I had a woman tell me once that she heard if they couldn't see the officer running radar, it fell under entrapment. That one's right up there with if the troopers not wearing his hat, the ticket will be dismissed.

Pssssssssssst. Dont say the ENTRAPMENT word.

Gene L
07-03-2007, 08:51 PM
The reason in Georgia is to prevent speed traps. "Radar Permits" are issued by the state, and each section of road the permit is issued for has to meet certain standards (and they're checked by Engineers.) I think you can't run radar on a hill with a 7% grade, or lots of other regulations.

The GSP can, but local authorities can not.

I'm sure I'm not the majority opinion here, but I really don't like running these dress up scams to run radar. I read somewhere or saw on TV about radar running guys dressing like Uncle Sam.

The point I think is to get people to slow down, not to write tickets. Writing tickets is necessary, but to me, it's an adjunct to peforming other duties. We have dedicated traffic folks, and they write a handfull, visible from 500 feet, and following all the other regulations.

If I could get folks to drive reasonbly, I wouldn't care if my guys never wrote a ticket. The County treasury would raise hell, but we don't work for the County treasury. I would love to slow down the number of auto accidents and deaths. If writing tickets does it, fine.

Also, in GA there's a "graduated drivers license program." Which is good. You're 18 and going over a certain speed, like 25 over, (I think) and your license re gone.

jakflak
07-03-2007, 09:32 PM
Please dont think I am trying to justify speeding or that I received a ticket for speed and I am trying to get out of it. Im just trying to understand the aspects on how different officers/agencies conduct their radar operations since I have seen different of examples of both techniques.

Thanks for your answers so far.

I think you'll find that honest questions (even ones asking many times before) tend to get honest answers. That's why so many of us posted answers.

Whenever I've run radar I try to be semi-visible. That way I can still nail the speeders, but everyone who passes my spot gets the message whether they're stopped or not. If it causes people to see me and slow down? Good. That's what I'm trying to do.

JonMcD1980
07-03-2007, 10:00 PM
Or have you heard,
"If you stopped in the median, you can't write me!"
"You crossed the median. You can't do that"
"You have no authority here. Only the federal government does."
"You have to let me see it."
"You have to give me a speedometer check first."
"I'm from *insert state of choice* and you can't write me."

A world full of lawyers. And some even have law degrees too!

Hey now, my dad is a lawyer....hahahaha...its true.

WARWAGON
07-04-2007, 01:25 PM
The reason in Georgia is to prevent speed traps. "Radar Permits" are issued by the state, and each section of road the permit is issued for has to meet certain standards (and they're checked by Engineers.) I think you can't run radar on a hill with a 7% grade, or lots of other regulations.

The GSP can, but local authorities can not.

I'm sure I'm not the majority opinion here, but I really don't like running these dress up scams to run radar. I read somewhere or saw on TV about radar running guys dressing like Uncle Sam.

The point I think is to get people to slow down, not to write tickets. Writing tickets is necessary, but to me, it's an adjunct to peforming other duties. We have dedicated traffic folks, and they write a handfull, visible from 500 feet, and following all the other regulations.

If I could get folks to drive reasonbly, I wouldn't care if my guys never wrote a ticket. The County treasury would raise hell, but we don't work for the County treasury. I would love to slow down the number of auto accidents and deaths. If writing tickets does it, fine.

Also, in GA there's a "graduated drivers license program." Which is good. You're 18 and going over a certain speed, like 25 over, (I think) and your license re gone.

You are correct.

I was taught a long time ago:
You write a ticket because it's necessary, not because you can.

Some of the smaller depts beat the radar to death and made it a central source of income.

Now you can be visible from 500 feet on an overpass with chase cars lined up or at night without any marker lights on. Your headlights are supposed to light up anything within 500 feet so you should see the police car. I usually try to park under a streetlight to at least give a fighting chance.

The whole idea is for people to slow down.
If you don't speed you don't have to worry about being caught.

C-Charlie42
07-04-2007, 01:42 PM
I'm highly visible when running radar in my zone. I'll sit in the breakdown lane on the opposite side of the roadway and wear um out in the opposing lanes.

I do have my share of cuts that I can pull back into if I want to be stealthy.

e-man
07-04-2007, 01:52 PM
Don't have to be visible at all............:eek:

This should explain it all....:D
http://www.postgazette.com/pg/07185/799265-85.stm

Troopers targeting speeders in Greene, Fayette
Wednesday, July 04, 2007

By Michael A. Fuoco, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette



A man wearing shorts and a ball cap backwards, sitting in a lawn chair and holding a newspaper alongside Route 119 in Bullskin, Fayette County, seemed out of place yesterday, but not so much that it made speeding drivers slow down.

Too bad for those who didn't. The man, an undercover state trooper, wasn't reading the newspaper but a portable radar gun he held behind it. Those exceeding the 55 mph speed limit were subsequently pulled over and ticketed by uniformed officers on motorcycles.

Those ticketed were stung by Operation Yellow Jacket II, an aggressive state police enforcement program targeting speeding, driving under the influence and seat belt usage in an effort to cut down on traffic fatalities and injuries.

The initiative, announced yesterday by state police Capt. Roger N. Waters at a news conference in the parking lot off Route 119, was precipitated by an alarming increase in traffic fatalities in Fayette and Greene counties in the first six months of this year, eclipsing the totals for all of 2006.

In Fayette County, 22 people have died in vehicle crashes, or three more than in all of 2006. About 80 percent of them were not wearing seat belts.

In Greene County, seven people have died in accidents in 2007, one more than last year's total.

"We're here this morning because we want to save lives, we want to reduce crashes, we want to prevent injuries. We care about what happens to people," said Capt. Waters, commanding officer of Troop B, which covers Allegheny, Fayette, Greene and Washington counties and a portion of Westmoreland.

The 29 people who have died in Fayette and Greene county crashes amount to two-thirds of the 43 people killed thus far in 2007 in all of the counties in Capt. Waters' command.

Roads to be targeted through Troop B's jurisdiction include Route 119, Route 51, Interstate 70, and anywhere speeding has caused accidents and deaths, he said.

And, he added, troopers will use nontraditional methods in trying to curb speeding, DUI and not wearing seat belts. Along two-lane roads, whose size makes traditional enforcement methods difficult, undercover troopers armed with portable radar guns will pose as civilians -- like the man pretending to read a newspaper. Because of their mobility, motorcycle officers will pull over speeders detected by the undercover troopers.

Also to be utilized are Pennsylvania Department of Transportation trucks, in which troopers will sit with radar guns. And helicopters will be employed to monitor speed with radio patrol cars to pull over speeders, Capt. Waters said.

Speeding is the No. 1 problem in the crashes, he said, adding that the nice weather may have played a role in the increased numbers because more people have been out and about in their cars.

To track how fast people are traveling, a speed monitoring wagon was set up for two days at a 55 mph section of Route 119, one of the main roads in Fayette County. The survey showed there were 402 vehicles clocked at 71-75 mph, 216 from 76-80 mph, and 151 in excess of 80 mph, including one timed at 155 mph.

"We need to make people aware of how fast they're going so they can maintain their vehicle in a safe manner," Capt. Waters said.

The enforcement patrols will include those troopers working their regular shifts and those being paid from funds amounting to 300 hours of overtime provided by the federal government.

retired
07-04-2007, 02:04 PM
I discovered when I was working radar a several years ago, that it didn't matter whether I was in plain sight or partially hidden. There were just as many violations when I was right out in the open. So, I found no need to try and hide.:)

StudChris
07-04-2007, 02:25 PM
I'm sure I'm not the majority opinion here, but I really don't like running these dress up scams to run radar. I read somewhere or saw on TV about radar running guys dressing like Uncle Sam.



That was Orange County SO (Orlando). Pretty much every holiday that guy dresses up in whatever is appropriate for either watching red lights (this time) or running laser. Orange County has a huge motors unit, and they don't get tied up doing crashes (FHP does them), so when they do opperations like that they get some pretty high numbers.

SgtCHP
07-04-2007, 02:56 PM
California has signs posted on the freeway that state: "Speed Enforced With Radar"

The issue is most officers don't sit and do radar shoots because the patrol cars are equipped with "running radar" and they get you before you catch up to them and slow down. It is great when a plan comes together. :p

If you listen to the truckers on the CB they will tell their "Buddie" where the smokies are moving. Again, generally, it is too late when the trucker spots the unit. :eek:

There is an arguement going around that speed enforcement by aircraft us unlawful because the pilot uses two fixed points to check speed (a speed trap). What the public does not realize is that the pilot/flight officer is checking the aircraft's speed between those two points while keeping pace with the speeder. :p

LeanG
07-04-2007, 03:00 PM
To date, I have never run radar invisible.:)

pujolsfan146
07-04-2007, 06:32 PM
You are correct.

I usually try to park under a streetlight to at least give a fighting chance.



What??:confused: Good for you but that's not for me. I run radar to slow cars down, arrest drunk drivers, get drugs, warrants. The list goes on. When I am involved in a fight I never give the opponent a fighting chance.:rolleyes:

School Cop
07-05-2007, 05:36 AM
How visible do you have to be for running radar?

What a great question. Next let's try,

"Have you stopped beating your wife?"


Just having a little fun - no hard feelings.

t150vsuptpr
07-05-2007, 06:06 AM
How visible do you have to be for running radar?


:rolleyes: I don't. :)

JJS
07-05-2007, 10:22 AM
Ive seen MSP take an electric repair truck, put the bucket up in the air as if the worker was working on the lines and they had a trooper dressed up running laser. As soon as you drive around the bend there are 10 troops standing on the side of the highway waiting to waving you down.

Now thats sneaky sneaky.

Taylor1430
07-05-2007, 11:40 AM
I will either go 'invisible' or out in the open depending on where I'm doing laser (I don't shoot radar). If I am on a small neighborhood street with a speed limit of 25, I will hide in a driveway or behind parked cars.

If I'm on one of the major arteries, I will sit right out in the open. I get the same amount of speeders in either spot, but on the major roads, I see the goal of getting everyone to slow down. If I'm out in the open and you still blow by me doing 20 over, you deserve the ticket.

j706
07-05-2007, 06:47 PM
:D Sure. Go tell the judge you were speeding and the meanie old policeman didn't give you a chance to see him and slow down before he stopped you. I think the judge will be very understanding:D

Thanks Mr. Obvious, you're a lifesaver.

Heck yea-thats how you beat that charge, I would love to be there and watch that!:D

1042 Trooper
07-05-2007, 07:31 PM
Anybody else seen that cop that dresses up like a clown, stands on the sidewalk and shoots LIDAR?

I missed my calling. That, should have been me. :D:D:D

D.o.D cop
07-06-2007, 03:51 AM
I've heard of a case where a woman contested a stop sign violation because the officer in question was over a block away (or something similar), and she claimed entrapment. When the judge heard this he leaned over and grumbled "I don't care if the officer is two blocks away and in a F@#$^&* tree when he spots you, it's not entrapment!"

retired
07-06-2007, 10:48 AM
Anybody else seen that cop that dresses up like a clown, stands on the sidewalk and shoots LIDAR?

I missed my calling. That, should have been me. :D:D:D



Damn, I find myself agreeing with you again.:D ;)

1042 Trooper
07-06-2007, 01:16 PM
Perhaps, retired, it is I, who agrees with you. YIKES! :D:D:D

I think most of us are somewhat on the same page, with the exception of politics. And really, no one really gives a rat's buttocks, what any of us here thinks, anyhow! :)

patroldog
07-06-2007, 09:15 PM
A law enforcement officer running "Radar" does not have to be completely visible to the motoring public, but, as stated earlier, radar beams need a clear unobstructed field in which to scan oncoming traffic, part of radar monitoring includes deterring excessive speed as much as catching the violators, the truth is most speeders will speed right past a patrol unit in plain view because the driver is usually distracted or just does not care and is focused only on getting where he/she is going regardless of the possible consequences.