RADAR and LIDAR Instruments in Virginia Court
If you have received a speeding ticket or a reckless driving summons for excessive speed in Virginia, the main evidence that is likely to be used against you is a reading on either a Radar or LIDAR device. While this reading is typically given a lot of credibility in court, there are potential defenses that you can raise. To discuss how these might apply to your case or for more on the use of Radar and LIDAR devices in VA, call and schedule a consultation with a Virginia speeding ticket lawyer today.
Weight of Radar Readings in Court
Radar readings are accepted by the court as very reliable and accurate. As long as the officer can show a proper calibration certificate and can further lay an adequate foundation for the admission of radar evidence, the judge will take it as strong admissible evidence.
Additional Evidence That Might Be Provided
Officers use a whole bunch of different ways to monitor speeding so that they can prove that someone was going over the speed limit. In addition to the radar and LIDAR equipment, which is backed up by calibration certificates, and they also routinely monitor traffic cameras and pace vehicles and may testify to the judge.
If I Wasn’t Going That Fast is it My Word Against the Officer’s?
If you truly believe that you weren’t going that fast, you’re going to need some kind of proof to back up this claim. It’s not going to be enough for you to simply go to court and just say that there was no way that you were going that fast without something further like a witness that can confirm that you weren’t going that fast, or a photo of yourself driving at that time and can show that you’re using your cruise control at a set speed or anything that’s going to demonstrate that you weren’t going that fast.
Because while it seems like it’s your word against the officer’s, the officer’s word has a lot more weight than yours because the officer’s word is supported by the reading on the radar or LIDAR equipment. The equipment itself is further supported by the calibration certificate that shows that the equipment was functioning properly and had been maintained within a reasonable period of time before and after your incident. So the officer’s word alone is not what’s being taken as testimony, but it’s the officer’s word and all of the other that’s backing it up, such as the equipment and calibration.
Potential Defenses For a Radar or LIDAR Reading
An improper calibration or lack of recent calibration is probably the best defense for any kind of speeding charge in court. If the officer doesn’t have a calibration certificate available or it’s not a true copy of the calibration certificate or it doesn’t have the required information on it, then this is all grounds to have the case completely dismissed, unless the officer can prove in some other manner that the driver was speeding.