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SCOTUS Rules Traffic Stop Justified


No License, No Driving

Police officers are expected to uphold a citizen’s Fourth Amendment rights, which prohibit searches and seizures without probable cause. This is true even when being pulled over for a traffic violation. However, sometimes it can be difficult to tell whether you’ve been pulled over for a traffic offense or an officer’s own underlying suspicions, and that’s exactly what the Supreme Court of the United States looked at in the case of Kansas v. Glover, where a law enforcement officer pulled over a driver on the suspicion that he had a revoked driver’s license. The cop was correct: Charles Glover Jr. was driving his vehicle illegally.

The question wasn’t whether Glover was breaking the law for driving on a revoked license. The focus of the case was what caused the police officer to run a registration check on Glover in the first place.

On April 6th, the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of the police officer’s decision to pull over Glover on the suspicion that he had a revoked license. To get a driver’s license revoked requires serious or repeated driving offenses, which played a primary role in the SCOTUS decision to rule in favor of the cop.

Why Is This Important?

Our criminal defense team finds this case particularly interesting because it validates police officers’ “random” registration checks without probable cause. They may claim there was a reason to run a vehicle registration check on you (i.e. unsafe driving), but there is also a chance that the check was random. Regardless of how a police officer discovered that you were driving illegally, once they have, you will need an experienced defense attorney on your side if you wish to avoid the fines and repercussions of the traffic offense you’re now facing.

The Fourth Amendment protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures, but in this case, the police officer’s search was deemed reasonable. If you’ve encountered a similar situation in which you were “randomly” pulled over, we encourage you to reach out to us for help. We would be happy to investigate the issue, analyze the facts of the case, and fight for a resolution to your traffic violation ticket.

The law enforcement officer in this case was legally allowed to stop Glover because there was probable cause, but that doesn’t mean every traffic stop situation works that way. Call The Meranda Law Firm LTD (614) 707-4239 today!