Mistakes Police Make

Mistakes the police make, and how they can help you:

1. **Stopping a vehicle on the basis of an anonymous call.** An officer can not rely on a phone call to stop you, if he does not have a name and address for the caller.

2. **Following a driver into his residence without an invitaion or without enough information to justify the entry.** Your home is protected under the fourth amendment.

3. **Basing an arrest on the statements of the driver alone.** The officer must have independent evidence to corroborate these statements. This often arises when he has not seen you in physical control of your car.

4. **Detaining a driver longer than is reasonable to investigate.** The constitution does not allow officers to hold you without limit.

5. **Stopping a vehicle without an articulable suspicion.** An officer can not stop you just because he thinks you are suspicious.

6. **Stopping a vehicle because it stops in the middle of the street or it is driving too slow.** Unless there is a specific traffic ordinance you are violating, such as impeding traffic, it is not lawful for an officer to stop you.

7. **Weaving within a lane.** The statute only requires you to drive as nearly as is practible within a single lane. Some cases hold that one weave into the shoulder is not enough reason for a stop.

8. **Stopping a vehicle based on a misperceived violation of a law.** The officer must be right about his interpretation of the law.

9. **Stopping a vehicle for an improper sign.** Street signs and lane markings must comply with Texas law.

10. **Failing to follow the rules of the Department of Public Safety, Breath Testing Manual.** These failures may invalidate any alcohol testing.

11. **Stopping at an improper roadblock.** There are guidlines that must be followed to validate the stop.

12. **Stopping a vehicle just to check the driver’s license and registration.** There must be an actual traffic violation or an articulable suspicion of a crime.

13. **Stopping a vehicle without being able to identify it as the one actually commiting a traffic infraction.** Officers must be able to convince the Court that they stopped the right car.

14. **Stopping a vehicle for no reason at all.** It’s done. Officers usually do not show up in Court on these.

15. **Blocking a vehicle’s exit without justification.** Officers may not restrict a drivers freedom to leave without a reason.