In a 5-1 decision, the Ohio Supreme Court recently ruled that the only thing a police officer needs to write you a speeding ticket is his eyes. The court explained that a police officers “unaided visual estimation” was sufficient enough to be used as evidence to convict an individual of violating speed limit laws.
No longer is a radar device necessary to issue a speeding ticket in Ohio, so long as the issuing police officer has undergone some kind of specific training on speed guestimation. Relying solely on an officer’s word will make contesting the accusation a hopeless effort because when it’s a game of our word against theirs, their word far too often trumps our own.
If we know anything about those with power over others is that when granted expanses on that power, they will abuse it. The Ohio courts have essentially granted the police the authority to pull us over for anything. Although it’s blatantly obvious that this ruling in favor of broader police powers isn’t so much one to curb fast drivers, but instead one in which to generate greater revenues through an influx of speeding tickets.
All Ohioans are now basically fair game to be pulled over whether they tend to speed or not based on an officer’s pure suspicion that you were speeding. Ohio lawmakers have achieved a new level of naiveté if they cannot foresee the potential for abuse brought about through this decision.
“Son, do you know how fast you were going?”
“Why no sir, I don’t.”
“Well don’t worry; I’m sure it was fast.”
You can read more about the Ohio Supreme Courts decision here.