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Don't Spy On Me

Governor Brown just vetoed a bill that would give Apple Valley and Barstow residents the option of placing tracking devices in their drivers’ licenses.

Senate Bill 249 was designed to ease congestion at U.S.-Mexico border crossings. The radio frequency identification (RFID) chips are not terribly new. In fact, a number of states already allow them and some groups tried to get a similar measure approved in 2013. But privacy advocates, including the American Civil Liberties Union, typically oppose all government spying measures regardless of their nature or purpose, and other advocates expressed concern about possible hacking.

In his brief veto message, the Governor stated that he did not want to burden the DMV with additional responsibilities when there are “other ways” to speed border crossings.

Technology and Traffic Tickets

There are already a number of tools and techniques that peace officers use to enforce certain provisions of the Vehicle Code.

One of the most controversial is the Stingray device, which allows officers to read text messages from a wireless device. These gadgets are in use in many California jurisdictions, basically due to the narrowness of the cellphone laws. In order to prove a texting and driving violation, the state must prove that the driver was sending or receiving a text message or email, and not just browsing the web or looking at a map.

Although they are currently illegal in California under the speed trap law, speeding cameras may soon make an appearance on streets and highways in The Golden State. Computers measure the time it takes for a vehicle to travel from Point A to Point B, calculate the vehicle’s speed based on that amount of time, and issue a citation if appropriate.

The privacy concerns regarding Stingrays are somewhat apparent, while speeding cameras suffer from many of the same procedural and substantive defects as red light cameras. We will continue to monitor Sacramento to see if any intrusive attempts to regulate traffic come through the legislature.

Getting Legal Help

The aggressive lawyers at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call today at 661-859-1177 or email attorney@markbigger.com to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español, llame al 661-376-0214.