Police Reform and Traffic Stops

Nationwide police reforms limiting traffic stops may contribute to a rise in dui fatalities in recent years. Since the George Floyd incident, subsequent protests and public outcry, police reform has spread to many states throughout the country. Although there is another clear reason for the increase, that being the increase in alcohol consumption during the pandemic.  However, police reform in cities like New York City and Philadelphia have insisted on policies to pull back on traffic stops for minor violations, often missing signs of an impaired driver. Https://www.foxnews.com/us/police-reforms-limiting-traffic-stops-contributed-rise-dui-fatalities-experts-say  

Philadelphia Limits Stops for Minor Traffic Violations 

Philadelphia is the first major city in the United States to ban police officers from pulling over drivers for minor traffic violations. The low-level offenses are those such as expired registration for 60 days or less, a single brake or headlight out, minor bumper damage, or using the car without an official certificate of inspection.   

“Known as the “driving equality law,” the Philadelphia legislation was heralded as one that would combat racial profiling and help remedy data showing minorities in the city are 3.4 times as likely to be pulled over as white people.” Https://www.foxnews.com/us/traffic-reforms-racial-equity-increases-violent-crime  

Other States Limiting Traffic Stops 

Philadelphia is not alone in making such these changes. Los Angeles has implemented a similar law restricting the policing of minor violations, and Minneapolis has taken similar measures. In 2021, new legislation for the entire state of Virginia restricted officers from pulling drivers over solely for minor infractions. The same reasoning of eliminating racial disparities that target minority communities was used to promote these reforms.  Https://www.foxnews.com/us/traffic-reforms-racial-equity-increases-violent-crime  

What is the Argument About? 

Often traffic stops for minor infractions lead to further investigation that uncover more serious illegal or criminal activity. However, historically this ability has been abused by some police officers and more so to non-white offenders. Police officers throughout time have been accused, and sometimes rightfully so, of violating a person’s right against illegal search and seizure. A minor traffic violation may grant an officer reasonable suspicion to stop a vehicle which could lead to more information that would allow the officer probable cause to arrest. The abuse of this ability against minorities has driven the types of police reform found in cities like New York and Philadelphia. 

Where does Mississippi Stand? 

Though Mississippi is historically a conservative state, police reform in some fashion is gaining popularity across the nation. Even so, as articles and experts the within them suggest that these types of reforms that limit traffic stops are leading to an increase in dui fatalities and violent crime, there will most likely be a correction. Just because it is the trend now, does not mean that will be the case in the future. Also, in places like Mississippi and other conservative states, any type of police reform will likely be limited. Do not just assume that the “defund the police” or “police reform” movements make it less likely to face a dui or other criminal charges.  

 Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney 

When you are searching the state of Mississippi for a qualified, experienced dui defense attorney, look no further than Vic Carmody Jr., P.A. No matter the circumstances of your case, the sooner you get in touch with a qualified dui attorney the better chance you have at a favorable outcome for your case. Over the years, we have helped countless defendants who have been charged with dui’s. Please call us for a free consultation today, and we can help you defend yourself in the unfortunate case of being arrested and charged with a dui in Mississippi.  

Please also see us on mississippi-lawyers.com and view our reviews on avvo.com, superlawyers.com, and martindale.com. Our email address is vic@mississippi-lawyers.com, and our office phone number is (601) 948 – 4444 option 1. 


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