Archives for July 2013

Man beats ticket on dashcam evidence, takes town to court

Autoblog; July 30, 2013

Rod MacIver wanted justice after being wronged by his local police
department. He was pulled over and cited for running a red light,
despite the officer’s dashcam video clearly shown that he hadn’t. When
the matter went to court, the judge, after viewing the footage, threw
the case out and dressed down the officer, Jason Lawton.

MacIver isn’t through, though, taking the matter to small claims court
over the time and effort involved in beating his original ticket.
Looking for $2,000 in damages, the 56-year-old resident argues that the
department’s default attitude “was dishonesty in every encounter.”

With his day in court scheduled and Judge Samuel Hoar “looking forward
to” the proceedings, neither the officer, his sergeant nor a department
administrator were to be found. Only the Shelburne Police Department’s
lawyer, Colin McNeil, showed up in court. Arguing that the burden of
proof was on MacIver, the lawyer argued that the officers didn’t need to
attend the proceedings (no joke, they were across the street at a
coffee shop – insert donut jokes in three, two, one…), meaning the
matter was set aside for a future date. While the matter still isn’t
resolved, Judge Hoar informed McNeil that “it would be a mistake” for
the officers to miss the next hearing, according to a report from WCAX.

Take a look at the full video below and the news report, and let us know what you think. Was there any reason for pulling MacIver over?

ACLU raises privacy concerns about police technology tracking drivers

CNN; July 18, 2013

Police around the United States are recording the license plates of passing drivers and storing the information for years with little privacy protection, the American Civil Liberties Union said Wednesday.

The information potentially allows authorities to track the movements of everyone who drives a car.

The ACLU documented the police surveillance after reviewing 26,000 pages of material gathered through public records requests to almost 600 local and state police departments in 38 states and the District of Columbia.

Opinion: Supreme Court must protect our privacy from the government

Police are gathering the vehicle information with surveillance technology called automatic license plate readers, and it’s being stored — sometimes indefinitely — with few or no privacy protections, the ACLU said.

“The documents paint a startling picture of a technology deployed with too few rules that is becoming a tool for mass routine location tracking and surveillance,” the ACLU said in a written statement.

To read the complete article, please click here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/17/us/aclu-license-plates-readers/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

Agent who tracked Iowa governor’s speeding SUV fired

USA Today; July 17, 2013

DES MOINES, Iowa — A former Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation agent who encouraged troopers to pull over a speeding vehicle that contained the Iowa governor was fired Wednesday at the conclusion of a 2 1/2-month internal investigation.

Larry Hedlund, 55, said he now intends to sue the state.

“I’ve been treated like a criminal,” Hedlund told The Des Moines Register a few hours after he learned he had been fired. “The best analogy I can give you is that they investigated me like I was a murderer, and in the process they murdered my career.”

According to paperwork that state officials gave Hedlund on Wednesday, the 25-year veteran investigator was fired for sending “negative and disrespectful messages” about DCI leaders in emails to his subordinates, for misusing a state-owned car on April 26, and for being “deceptive” about his work status in subsequent conversations with his supervisor.

To read the complete article, please click here: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/07/17/iowa-governor-branstad-speeding-agent/2529743/