Monday, September 11, 2006

Traffic Tickets

A while back (too lazy to google for a link)there was a change in State Police policy prohibiting troopers from negotiating plea bargain on speeding tickets. This move was somewhat unpopular, as it was seen adding to the caseload of courts and DA's offices.

Some interesting fallout of the decision occurred recently in the Town of Walkill. There the town justice dismissed over 70 tickets for "failure to prosecute" when the trooper was the only authority who showed. The justice's reasoning was that the trooper is now a witness and is not the prosecutor.

Law enforcement sources cited in the article seemed to disagree vehemently, but I believe there's some merit to the judge's decision. The dual role for the officer isn't something that typically happens in our criminal justice system and something I believe needs careful scrutiny.


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