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San Francisco DUI Attorney: 10-Second Pause At Green Light Insufficient Basis For Stop

 Posted on February 28, 2012 in DUI

State of New Jersey v. Brackin , - A.3d - -, 2011 WL 1661381 (N.J.Super.A.D.)

Defendant was pulled over after he was stopped at a green light for 10 seconds and then pulled away without incident.

The Court held that the pause at the green light “was not of sufficient length to have raised community caretaking concerns, particularly in circumstances in which defendant's driving after commencing to proceed through the light was unexceptionable. Officer Tobin could not have had a reasonable belief that a traffic law had been violated…because as he testified, no cars followed defendant's, and thus there was indisputably no traffic to obstruct. Thus, we adhere to our conclusion that a reasonable, articulable suspicion that a motor vehicle violation had been committed was not established."

EDITORS NOTE: There are several state cases on both sides of the fence on this issue. For example, in Illinois it has been held that a delay of 3-5 seconds at a green light, while the officer is waiting behind the vehicle, is enough to stop the vehicle.


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