Roundup: January 7, 2015

Each Wednesday, we’ll publish quick summaries of the articles from the last week on We’re doing this because these articles are often strongly connected to the issues that National Motorists Association members are interested in.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015
Federal Court: Faulty Sense Of Smell Justifies Lengthy Detention
A motorist may be detained for more than an hour if a police officer claims he smells marijuana, even if no illicit substances are ever found. That was the ruling of the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, which last week rejected Tito Abbo’s false arrest lawsuit against the Wyoming Highway Patrol officers who mistook the scent of juniper for marijuana.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015
Purported Ohio Speed Camera Ban Fizzles Out
Lawmakers in the Ohio General Assembly loudly trumpeted their passage of legislation last month that would “ban” red-light cameras and speed cameras. Without exception, local news outlets reported that camera use would “come to an end” without explaining that the provisions of the new legislation did not actually ban automated ticketing machines. On Monday, Dayton became the first city to formally announce that Redflex Traffic Systems of Australia would continue to mail tickets to vehicle owners within city limits.

Monday, January 05, 2015
Tennessee Motorist Fights $18,480 Traffic Stop Seizure
A Tennessee motorist who committed no crime is fighting in federal court to recover the $18,480 seized from him in a traffic stop. Although El A. Willis was never charged with any wrongdoing, he must mount an uphill legal battle in federal court if he ever wants to see again the cash taken from him by a Monroe County sheriff’s detective on February 10.

Sunday, January 04, 2015
Australia, Italy, UK: Speed Cameras Blocked, Burned, Blown Up
Australian motorists are protecting each other from speed cameras by coordinating efforts through the Block Their Shot Facebook page. The premise is simple. Drivers pretend that their cars are broken down so that they can park them with the hood open behind photo radar vans. This obscures the camera’s view, preventing any citations from being generated. Officials in New South Wales are furious.

Friday, January 02, 2015
Texas: Mayor Has Police Chief Dismiss Camera Ticket Issued To His Employer
Motorists who receive a red-light camera ticket often find themselves in an uphill battle to defend their innocence, in many cases finding they have no chance of appeal. That is not the case for officials in Willis, Texas where the police chief asked American Traffic Solutions, the Arizona-based company in charge of issuing automated traffic tickets, to dismiss a citation mailed to the mayor’s employer.

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