Methods Used to Catch Speeding in Hampton

There are a variety of different methods law enforcement officers in Hampton, Virginia use to catch speeding drivers. Below a Hampton speeding ticket lawyer discusses these methods and how they may be defended in court. To learn more or begin building a defense for your case, call and schedule a consultation today.

How Hampton Law Enforcment Officer Catch Speeding Drivers

Virginia law enforcement officers can tell if you’re speeding because they have special speed detecting equipment to determine how fast drivers are going on the highways. The instruments not only track speed but they also are maintained and calibrated before and after the officer shifts to ensure they’re used and working properly. They’re considered to be extremely reliable by the court. Each particular instrument comes with its own set of paperwork which is updated every single day for every single charge.

An officer coming into court will not only have what he claims is the speed that you were going, but will have paperwork that’s known to be accurate to back it up.

Different Methods Used to Catch Speeding Drivers

Radar and LIDAR are instruments that detect the speed. Radar specifically is a Doppler radar whereas LIDAR is a newer technology which utilizes a laser to do the same thing as radar just in a more accurate way. Pacing is when the officer targets a vehicle that they believe to be speeding,  gets behind the vehicle and matches that vehicle’s speed with the police cruiser. While the officer is following the vehicle at the exact same speed as the vehicle, the officer looks at his own speedometer to determine how fast the targeted vehicle is going.


In Hampton speeding cases, pacing is when the officer targets the vehicle that he believes to be speeding by following the vehicle with his police cruiser. At this point, the officer attempts to match the cruiser’s speed with the targeted vehicle’s speed. And then he looks at his own speedometer to determine how fast the targeted vehicle is going.

Pacing is admissible evidence of speeding. It’s very controversial however because it doesn’t have the same types of requirements that speed reading instruments calibration require. It’s a lot more subjective and there’s a lot more room for error.

Issues Related to Pacing

Pacing is much more subjective than radar readings because it’s possible than an officer was slowly gaining on defendant. Then the speed that they’re alleging the defendant was going was actually slower than the officer’s true speed because the officer was going slightly faster in order to catch up. It’s also possible that the officer’s speedometer was not calibrated properly. And therefore, he tracked the defendant at an incorrect speed due to his own faulty equipment.

Weight of Radar Readings in Court

The weight of a radar reading in court is pretty reliable. The judges are going to take it as fact assuming that the officer has done his calibration certificate properly. If there’s any information on the calibration certificate that is missing or incorrect or if the calibration certificate itself is not a true copy of the original, then the results are not considered to be reliable at all and the case should be dismissed unless there’s other evidence showing that the defendant was speeding.

Defenses to Radar Gun Readings

There are a few defenses, the main one being mistakes in the calibration certificate. If the calibration certificate is incorrect or missing or not a true copy then the results are considered to be inaccurate and not reliable so they aren’t used by the court. This is probably one of the more unlikely situations because officers know that this is a strong defense so they’re very good about maintaining and calibrating their equipment and making sure they have the proper paperwork.

Another defense available for radar is that the officer may have locked onto the wrong object. This is more difficult to prove in court, but sometimes with a good line of cross examination, it’s possible for an attorney to get a police officer to admit to the possibility that maybe they were not at a great angle in order to lock on to the correct vehicle or that there was a lot of traffic and the possibility does exist that they weren’t completely accurate with who they locked on to.

Myths About Speed Reading Instruments

Some common myths about speeding reading instruments in Hampton is about their accuracy. It’s very common for defendants to tell me that they don’t think the gun was working properly because there’s no way they were going that fast and that they know they weren’t going that fast because they never go that fast for whatever reason that they have.

However, this is not a valid defense. People don’t seem to understand exactly what goes in to proving that a radar or a LIDAR instrument was working properly. There is so much more than just an officer arbitrarily pointing instrument at a car and hoping for the best. They’re very accurate and the courts always accept them as accurate as long as the calibration certificate doesn’t have any mistakes and is a true copy.

Importance of a Hampton Speeding Ticket Lawyer

It’s important to seek an experienced Hampton speeding ticket lawyer because you want to make sure that you give yourself the best possible opportunity to get good results on your case. You don’t want to walk into court with just anybody and then have poor results because somebody didn’t know what they were doing. Speeding is one of those types of offenses that is extremely common and it’s very easy to go in there and say the wrong thing and end up with a speeding conviction. Whereas it’s also very easy to go in there and say just the right things to have the charge reduced or dismissed to a civil offense which won’t affect anybody’s insurance.