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Connecticut Speeding Ticket Defense

You appear for your trial for getting a speeding ticket. Previously, the prosecutor extended an offer to you that you have rejected (afterall, that is why you are going to trial!). You were also told that it is very hard to beat a speeding ticket (and it is) so you should have accepted the offer (which you didn't). What can you do? The State has the burden of proving you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Whether it is the highway speeding or the local road speeding ticket, the evidence is pretty similar. You must have been exceeding the posted speed limit and the state through the arresting officer has to prove it. Most of the time, the police rely on a speed detection device such as radar or laser to determine your speed. If the results of the detection device are admitted into evidence it is nearly impossible to beat the ticket. So what do you do? You challenge the admissibility of the evidence! Connecticut General Statute 14-219c states that if the required elements of the statute are successfully testified to by the arresting officer, there is a strong presumption as to the accuracy of the device to support a conviction. Most of the elements are easy to meet - officer training, testing before and after the officer's shift, and using the device in a location where there is minimal chance of distortion. The last condition, though, can cause the prosecutor problems - the requirement that the "device was expertly tested within a reasonable time following the arrest, and such testing was done by means which do not rely on the internal calibrations of such device". It is not sufficient that the state produce the certification that the device was tested by an independent lab. The test must have been performed within a reasonable time AFTER the arrest was made. Before agreeing to the admission of the certification, examine it carefully. When was the testing done - before or after the arrest? If you can successfully argue that this element was not proven by the state, you may be able to exclude any testimony concerning the device and possibly beat the ticket!

Additional resources provided by the author

Connecticut General Statutes Section 14-219
Connecticut General Statutes Section 14-219c

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