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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Contesting 71 Over 55 on Washington State's SR 270

    I would have to at least somewhat disagree with the above, because for most WA speeding tickets preponderance is largely irrelevant. Preponderance is only applicable to a finding of “committed” or “not committed” after a hearing of evidence. A successful speed ticket defense usually involves preliminary (before evidence is heard) suppression of the speed measuring device evidence due to insufficiency of required elements such as certification, testing, tracking history or visual estimate. Those situations will result in NO finding based on weight of evidence, but rather a simple dismissal without prejudice--meaning theoretically the case could be re-filed but actually that never happens.

    If the SMD evidence is suppressed, dismissal due to lack of evidence is automatic. Tracking history and a visual estimate are required as a prerequisite to using the SMD, because in Washington State a visual estimate alone is usually not sufficient. In ticketnoob’s case the officer attests to him “Passing a vehicle that was at 60 mph” then later “I did not see the defendant pass any other vehicle.” These statements clearly relate to the visual estimate and tracking history, which if deemed insufficient could result in exclusion or suppression of the radar reading and dismissal due to lack of evidence.

    Although this particular judge did decide that the tracking history and visual estimate were admissible, it’s possible that a higher court could find that he erred in that conclusion. However since the radar evidence was deemed admissible, the end result was preponderance and a finding of “committed”.

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