So I got this ticket (Legal Question)

  • You are viewing Orangepower as a Guest. To start new threads, reply to posts, or participate in polls or contests - you must register. Registration is free and easy. Click Here to register.
Mar 3, 2004
2,001
1,708
1,743
Smithville,TX
#1
From a deputy sheriff tonight while driving down the beach. It was nearly deserted and he followed me for like a half mile before finally hitting the lights. He pulls me over and tickets me for having one of my two license plate bulbs out. I mean yes, it may have been out, but my plate WAS fully illuminated by the other light bulb!

AND.... When he walks around to the back of my truck he reaches over the bed side and without asking opened the two ice chests I had in the back to see what was in them. ( Which was nothing, I use them as water proof storage for suitcases, etc., when I drive down.) There were no empty beer cans in the truck bed, and I hadn't had a sip of alcohol.

My question is.... Did he have the right to look in my coolers, and do I have to pay the ticket since my plate was lit up? BTW he was a complete horses ass the entire time or I wouldn't even be asking.
 

pokelahoman

Keeper of the Cursive Script
Aug 31, 2009
6,210
3,844
743
31
Edmond
#2
From a deputy sheriff tonight while driving down the beach. It was nearly deserted and he followed me for like a half mile before finally hitting the lights. He pulls me over and tickets me for having one of my two license plate bulbs out. I mean yes, it may have been out, but my plate WAS fully illuminated by the other light bulb!

AND.... When he walks around to the back of my truck he reaches over the bed side and without asking opened the two ice chests I had in the back to see what was in them. ( Which was nothing, I use them as water proof storage for suitcases, etc., when I drive down.) There were no empty beer cans in the truck bed, and I hadn't had a sip of alcohol.

My question is.... Did he have the right to look in my coolers, and do I have to pay the ticket since my plate was lit up? BTW he was a complete horses ass the entire time or I wouldn't even be asking.
When I got my speeding ticket in plain daylight the highway patrol guy asked me what he would find if he opened my ice chest in the bed of my truck. I told him meat, which was the truth, but he never did open it. Is it even illegal to have beer in an ice chest that is not inside the vehicle anyways?
 

colb

Wham Block Expert
A/V Subscriber
Sep 9, 2010
10,182
12,698
743
33
Guthrie, OK
www.orangepower.com
#3
I believe you had your rights violated (coolers).


Depending on the price of ticket, I would probably fight it. (Lights) But then again, I do not know Texas state law. In Oklahoma it's basically "Fully luminated.". However, in Texas, the law could be "If there's a light, it better work."
 

CPTNQUIRK

I'm Your Captain!
A/V Subscriber
Nov 20, 2006
30,017
19,908
1,743
67
In the Boondocks in Creek County, Oklahoma
#4
I think Oklahoma's law is that it should work properly, just like Texas's law. My son got stopped for "uneven distribution of light" because his two headlights appeared to be shining at different intensities. That was never brought up in court since that stop lead to a vehicle search that he permitted which resulted in drug charges.
 

CPTNQUIRK

I'm Your Captain!
A/V Subscriber
Nov 20, 2006
30,017
19,908
1,743
67
In the Boondocks in Creek County, Oklahoma
#5
GoPokes83, in your case my question is whether the beach was actually considered to be a road that vehicle lighting laws could be enforced. I can have a pickup out in my pasture and it doesn't have to have proper lighting, but if I pull onto a county road or highway, the lights had better work.
 

Orangendn

Territorial Marshal
Nov 17, 2004
5,248
1,893
1,743
El Reno, OK
#6
Vehicle searches seem to be hard to avoid.

There are several ways the authorities can legally search your car. They can either obtain your consent to a search or they can obtain a search warrant. They can also search if the car seems suspicious or if they have probable cause.

So what is suspicious? That's the million dollar question. Reaching to the glove compartment to get the registration and insurance may be suspicious acitivity. How does the cop know if you are getting your insurance or a gun? Not turning off the engine until the cop gets to the vehicle may be suspicious. Almost anything can be construed (or misconstrued) to be suspicious. It is very hard to not give an officer probable cause if the cop really wants to search your vehicle.

There is a reduced expectation of privacy in a vehicle than a house. Why?:confused: Because the purpose of a vehicle is for transportation and not the long-term storage of personal property. And the vehicle and it's contents are out in the public for all to view. Hence the lowered expectation of privacy for a vehicle.

So where can they search now? Incredibly, the Fourth Amendment permits the officer to search the vehicle's interior, including the glove compartment!!!:x This is because there is no reasonable expectation that a vehicle is private. So that means that laundry baskets, luggage, bags of groceries and yes...ice chests can be searched if the officer has probable cause. And it's not hard at all to establish probable cause.

So yes the cops did have every right to search your ice chest if you gave them probable cause and you did probably give them probable cause because it's not hard to give probable cause. Heck driving down the beach at night for over half a mile is suspicious!!!
 

RoVerto Solo

Lifetime Ban
Banned
Feb 10, 2007
0
2
0
#7
Searching Vehicles Without a Warrant

The real lesson here is not to obstruct the officer's search, especially anything in plain view.
 

OrangeAggie

Assistant to the Moderater
A/V Subscriber
Feb 6, 2004
20,210
14,957
1,743
Edmond
#8
When I got my speeding ticket in plain daylight the highway patrol guy asked me what he would find if he opened my ice chest in the bed of my truck. I told him meat, which was the truth, but he never did open it. Is it even illegal to have beer in an ice chest that is not inside the vehicle anyways?
No, it isn't illegal to have beer inside the truck either as long as it isn't opened. And, open container laws only apply to storage within the passenger area of a vehicle.
 

pokelahoman

Keeper of the Cursive Script
Aug 31, 2009
6,210
3,844
743
31
Edmond
#9
No, it isn't illegal to have beer inside the truck either as long as it isn't opened. And, open container laws only apply to storage within the passenger area of a vehicle.
That's what I thought, which is why I was confused he would ask in such a condescending tone at like 2 pm on a Sunday on the highway when he had just seen my ID stating I was 22 and there was no smell of alcohol or even any reason at all to believe I had been drinking.
 
Aug 11, 2004
1,592
23
1,668
40
Enid, OK
www.faulklawfirm.com
#10
He needed probable cause to open the ice chests, which he obviously did not have. General nervousness, etc...without more is not probable cause.

If you want to fight the ticket, I agree with a previous poster that I would check first to see if general traffic laws apply on the beach. Second, in Oklahoma the statute requires the tag be visible from a certain amount of feet, there is no 1 light or 2 light rule so I would check into that as well.

Regardless of what you do about the ticket, I would call the sheriffs department and get a copy of their form to make a formal written complaint. The guy violated your constitutional rights and deserves to be punished for it, before he does it to someone else.
 

Slugger926

Federal Marshal
Oct 19, 2004
11,704
1,676
1,743
#11
That's what I thought, which is why I was confused he would ask in such a condescending tone at like 2 pm on a Sunday on the highway when he had just seen my ID stating I was 22 and there was no smell of alcohol or even any reason at all to believe I had been drinking.
Because when you are brainwashed and rewarded to look for bad things/guys, you will find bad things even if you have to provoke them. The guys job may be on the line if his department doesn't bring in enough money from fines.

Also, strong rumor has it that their have been OHP members planting drugs, and forcing people into dealing much like the ring of ATF and Tulsa police officers. What is to say that if he looked, they wouldn't plant something as they look?
 

Slugger926

Federal Marshal
Oct 19, 2004
11,704
1,676
1,743
#13
Rabble rabble cops suck rabble rabble they're gonna plant things rabble rabble.
They are planting things on each other these days, and no, there are many good ones out there. It seems what we are seeing these days are coming from the corporate strategy of drug cartels.

When it happens to one person or group, it is an incident. When it has happened to multiple people that I know in multiple areas of the state, it has become a serious pattern. Here is one of the cases: http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?subjectid=14&articleid=20100410_11_A1_Aforme43087

Anyone can be the bad guy whether they are wearing a badge or not.
 
Aug 11, 2004
1,205
73
1,678
55
Newkirk, Ok
#15
I got stopped here for the same thing by a county deputy a couple years ago. Afterwards I talked to several people who had been stopped also. I think what the sheriffs department here was doing was looking for drunks. I heard they had gotten some grant to crack down on drunk driving. They would make random stops for some minor violation and then check to see if they thought the driver had been drinking. He didn't give me a ticket though. Good thing, my tag lights on my farm trucks never work. The wires always get torn off by grass and weeds out in the pastures.
 
Aug 11, 2004
1,592
23
1,668
40
Enid, OK
www.faulklawfirm.com
#16
I got stopped here for the same thing by a county deputy a couple years ago. Afterwards I talked to several people who had been stopped also. I think what the sheriffs department here was doing was looking for drunks. I heard they had gotten some grant to crack down on drunk driving. They would make random stops for some minor violation and then check to see if they thought the driver had been drinking. He didn't give me a ticket though. Good thing, my tag lights on my farm trucks never work. The wires always get torn off by grass and weeds out in the pastures.

Well to be clear, if you have actually committed a traffic violation, they are well within their rights to stop you for that purpose and discover other evidence as long as it is dicovered in their investigation of the original offense. This is true even if the cop follows you for 5 miles before you committed the violation and really just wanted to pull you over for some completely unrelated reason (you looked suspicious, whatever). So if your tag light was actually working and illuminated the tag at the appropriate distance, then everything that follows is BS.
 
Aug 11, 2004
1,592
23
1,668
40
Enid, OK
www.faulklawfirm.com
#18
They are planting things on each other these days, and no, there are many good ones out there. It seems what we are seeing these days are coming from the corporate strategy of drug cartels.

When it happens to one person or group, it is an incident. When it has happened to multiple people that I know in multiple areas of the state, it has become a serious pattern. Here is one of the cases: http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?subjectid=14&articleid=20100410_11_A1_Aforme43087

Anyone can be the bad guy whether they are wearing a badge or not.

Slugger, I know you are mostly on the same side on these things as me, but what are you saying about Mr. McFadden?
 

Slugger926

Federal Marshal
Oct 19, 2004
11,704
1,676
1,743
#19
Slugger, I know you are mostly on the same side on these things as me, but what are you saying about Mr. McFadden?
Cops A and B plants stuff in innocent Cop's C possession. Then bust Cop C with overwhelming evidence. Then give Cop C the choice of prison or the dark side. Then they go and do the same thing to other civilians and cops.
 

RoVerto Solo

Lifetime Ban
Banned
Feb 10, 2007
0
2
0
#20
Cops A and B plants stuff in innocent Cop's C possession. Then bust Cop C with overwhelming evidence. Then give Cop C the choice of prison or the dark side. Then they go and do the same thing to other civilians and cops.
That's real comforting to think about.