Tag Archives: reasonable and articulable suspicion

The Ohio “Clear and Convincing Evidence” Standard

clear and convincing evidence

Clear and Convincing Evidence is required for the standardized field sobriety tests to be admitted. Ohio Revised Code 4511.19(D)(4)(b) sets forth the standards for admissibility of the results of field sobriety tests in OVI (drunk driving) prosecutions.  See State v. Bozcar, 113 Ohio St. 3d 148, 2007-Ohio-1251, 863 N.E.2d 115 (2007).  In order for the tests to be admissible, the State must demonstrate:

  1. By clear and convincing evidence.
  2. The Officer administered the tests in substantial compliance.
  3. The
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What Are (And What Are Not) Standardized Field Sobriety Tests

standardized field sobriety testsThe dream of implementing Standardized Field Sobriety Tests has long been a goal of law enforcement.  Extensive government testing was begun in the 1970’s to determine a scientifically valid way of helping police officers detect intoxication in drivers under suspicion of drunk driving.  Prior to this undertaking, officers were doing their best to gather evidence of drunk driving, or simply not arresting for the offense due to the difficulty of proving impairment in court.  Some more ingenious tests included [Read the full post. . .]

Marked Lanes Violations & Traffic Stops

marked lanesWhen can a police officer make a stop for a marked lanes violation?

In State v. Houck, 2011-Ohio-6359, Ohio’s Fifth Appellate District considered the legal standards required to stop a person for a marked lanes violation. See O.R.C. 4511.33

“In Ohio, when a driver commits only a de minimis marked-lanes violation, there must be some other evidence to suggest impairment before an officer is justified in stopping the vehicle. See State v. Gullett (1992), 78 Ohio App.3d 138,

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License Plate Light Not Illuminated (O.R.C. 4513.05)

Neon sign

In Ohio, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle without a white light illuminating the rear registration plate. See O.R.C. 4513.05.  This law is often used as a pretext for a traffic stop which allows the officer to come into contact with the motorist.  Here is a full text of the law. 

4513.05 Tail lights and illumination of rear license plate.

(A) Every motor vehicle, trackless trolley, trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or vehicle which is being drawn at

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Nonstandardized Field Sobriety Tests

Ohio has adopted the three-test field sobriety protocol as set forth in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) manual for training law enforcement officers.  The three tests adopted by NHTSA all survived scientific scrutiny as being indicative of impairment.  The tests are: (1) horizontal gaze nystagmus, a test of the subject’s eyes; (2)  walk & turn; (3) one-leg-stand.  The officer is trained to administer the tests in a standardized fashion and record “clues” of impairment as evidenced by the [Read the full post. . .]