# Calculating an angle for my speeding defense!

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Hello to All You Great Mathematicians Out There!

I am in desperate need to try and validate what would seem to be a simple mathematical procedure to determine the angle with which a Police Officer acquired a lock on my vehicle during a speed trap. I have already been to court and convicted and am now in my 11th hour of writing my appeal brief.

The Laser Technologies (LTI) 20-20 UltraLyte users manual indicates that based on the feet with which the Police Officer locked my vehicle (573 feet) and the fact that he was 72 feet off the direct line of site of my vehicle (6 lanes at 12 feet per lane) that the reading would be considered "Unacceptable" by LTI. This is the only section in the whole manual that indicates a scenario where the LTI 20-20 UltraLyte would not be able to handle its own error and could give an "Unacceptable" reading.

The table the LTI 20-20 UltraLyte users manual is not clear on the angle but in other parts of the manual it is referred to as being beyond 10%. I was blocked in every attempt to introduce the LTI 20-20 UltraLyte users manual into evidence, although I firmly believe after piling through the transcripts that I did properly lay the foundation to enter it into evidence, however I still desperately need to try and confirm some of this by calculating the angle.

So again, the officer is 573 feet from me when he locks my vehicle and he is at least 72 feet off-center per direct line of sight which would allow for the most accurate reading. At zero degrees (direct line of sight, he will get the most accurate reading) at 90 degrees he would get a reading of zero MPH, so the wider the angle the less accurate the reading down to a reading of zero MPH. I think I may have already solved this but it was not to my satisfaction (under 10%) and I am not certain of my calculation.

I am attaching the table from the manual that indicates that this should be an "Unacceptable" reading and maybe it's possible for someone to extrapolate that graph / table better in my case. Either way I am desperate and lacking in time to file my appeal brief, so any help would be humbly appreciated!

Regards,

DBAMSJ

My brother did provide me with the following table / graph based on the users manual but the courts blocked me from entering that into evidence as well!

Regards,

DBAMSJ

LidarGraph.pdf

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IMHO you have lost the case.

In your brother's graph, replace the "unacceptable" labelling with "too much in the automobilist's favor".

You were caught for speed, if you insist the judge can get very bas not because of your infraction but because you don't recognize you were faulty.

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Hello Michelle,

Thanks for you comments but you are assuming I am guilty of speeding, which I am not. I believe that the officer errored in what is called a slip effect, panning error, etc. where he initially targets the front of my car but then slips the LIDAR unit to another part of the car which causes a much higher reading. That is a tough defense to attempt. My car is by all accounts one of the smallest cars on the road both in height and width, it is a 2001 Toyota MR2 Convertible. The officer claims he targeted my front license plate since it gives a good horizontal flat and reflective surface for the purpose of targeting, however I have never put the front license plate on my car in the 10 years I have owned it!

I debated whether or not to present that as part of my defense but ultimately decided against it as it might have just caused me more grief!

The officer flat out lies in several parts of his testimony to bolster his case against me, but the court allows it and is completely biased towards the only witness that can't even produce a digital record of the traffic offense since the LIDAR unit is ancient technology and was purchased in 2002 but dates even further back based on when that model was actually first introduced to the market.

They also denied me a "Trial by Jury", which according the the "Rights" they read to me and make me sign completely indicate that I was able to have a "Trial by Jury" and not a "Trial by the Court" which is my primary appeal. The LTI 20-20 UltraLyte LIDAR device also had just had major repairs, due to the device being dropped, by LTI and only put back into service 6 days before my traffic stop and LTI did not re-certify the device per their original certification. None of this was good enough for the Municipal court, which by all accounts is a Kangaroo court! Hence my appeal to the District Court.

Anyway, I would appreciate it if anyone else could provide at least the mathmatical calculation on the angle so I can confirm or not whether I am wasting my time on that part of my appeal.

Regards,

DBAMSJ

IMHO you have lost the case.

In your brother's graph, replace the "unacceptable" labelling with "too much in the automobilist's favor".

You were caught for speed, if you insist the judge can get very bas not because of your infraction but because you don't recognize you were faulty.

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If I was a judge, and someone came before me spouting that load of horse-manure, I'd fine them extra for wasting the court's time.

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what was the speed measurement?

if the speed measurement was 70mph the speed limit 60mph and the error at that angle +/- 10% then you've still lost as 70mph -7mph is still 63mph and hence speeding.

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Nice Dekan,

I see you are one of those people who thinks the cops, court and laws are always right and that the taxpayers should always ante up. Not to mention that technology always works. I suppose you have never had a dropped cell phone call or a blue screen of death on you computer, etc., etc. Go back to you make believe world!

-DBAMSJ

If I was a judge, and someone came before me spouting that load of horse-manure, I'd fine them extra for wasting the court's time.

Hello Insane_Alien,

I was alleged to have been traveling at 84 MPH in a 65 MPH zone. One fact that people are missing is the LTI already has certain specifications and tolerances for an accurate reading with their LIDAR device. What they are saying here is that this goes beyond their acceptable margins and this is the only area in the entire users manual where LTI admits that the reading would be "Unacceptable" as can be seen in the paragraph next to the chart/table.

-DBAMSJ

what was the speed measurement?

if the speed measurement was 70mph the speed limit 60mph and the error at that angle +/- 10% then you've still lost as 70mph -7mph is still 63mph and hence speeding.

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I believe it is roughly 7.3 degrees.

Not a mathematician... could be wrong.

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Hello Losfomot,

That is roughly the number I was coming up with, around 7.21%, however the 10% margin is not entirely what they represent in the LTI users manual it is just a number they use in other parts of the manual. The chart/table still seems to indicate that the speed reading would be "unacceptable" based on the two distances referenced. I probably don't have "a snowball's chance in hell" in winning my appeal unless they rule on the issue of not allowing me the "Trial by Jury"!

Regards,

DBAMSJ

I believe it is roughly 7.3 degrees.

Not a mathematician... could be wrong.

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You may be correct in thinking that you have not gone over the speed limit . I didn't do the math as I am unsure of exactly what you mean but if it is as simple as reading two numbers on the sides of a graph and seeing which side of a line you are on when you make 2 perpendicular lines then maybe you are correct . Truly and honestly , if you get away with this road traffic offence you may then be setting a precedent depending on what the reason is . This precedent could affect hundreds and possibly thousands of cases . Do you see the bigger picture ?

I once got overcharged by my government to the tune of Euro 8.00 , but I realised that the law which made the deduction by the government possible was valid from a few days after they made the deduction . I realised that there could be up to 450 000 people that this affected which is a total overcharge by the government of Euro 3.6 million . If the government gave me my Euro 8.00 back I would be happy but I am sure I am happier that they have the Euro 3.6 million . I know I am correct , which is all that matters to me .

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I was alleged to have been traveling at 84 MPH in a 65 MPH zone. One fact that people are missing is the LTI already has certain specifications and tolerances for an accurate reading with their LIDAR device. What they are saying here is that this goes beyond their acceptable margins and this is the only area in the entire users manual where LTI admits that the reading would be "Unacceptable" as can be seen in the paragraph next to the chart/table.

-DBAMSJ

Unless you can determine WHY LTI places the noted limits on the angle of incidence of the radar beam, you are in danger of finding yourself actually arguing that you were traveling faster tnan the alleged 84 MPH. That does not strike me as a winning strategy.

One possible reason might be the potential to pick up reflections from the wheels, portions of which woul be moving much faster than the body of the car. A lot would depend on the geometry of the wheels and the details of the laser beam. If the officer testifies and is believed that he aimed for a flat spot, like the front license mounting surface, that nullify this approach.

The real reason would have to come from LTI.

I would not pin my hopes on that. Failure to recalibrate and certify the device after repairs strikes me as your best argument. If the gun has been checked in the interim your goose is cooked.

You said you were accused of traveling at 84 MPH . The ticket is usually written for something less than the recorded speed (this looks suspiciously like the cop wanted to keep the excess below 20 MPH). Any experienced cop can tell the difference between 65 MPH and 84+ MPH by eyeball. How fast were you really going ?

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You say

"The officer claims he targeted my front license plate since it gives a good horizontal flat and reflective surface for the purpose of targeting, however I have never put the front license plate on my car in the 10 years I have owned it!"

If you can prove that then you have shown the officer is a liar.

In that case there's no trustworthy evidence against you.

On the other hand you might get off the speeding ticket, but get done for not having a license plate.

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Your angle is 7.2 degrees. The chart says that the reading is 98% accurate at about the distances you mentioned. Hint: that's going to be a really bad defense.

Like John Cuthber says, you can show the cop a liar if you can get him to say you had a front license plate and then explain to the court that you don't have a front license plate. Make sure you're allowed not to have a front license plate in that jurisdiction. Also, if you don't have a special flat place for putting a license plate, that would help, as he may have been referring to that. In any case, this is a your word vs the cop's word, so showing the cop a liar is a good bet.

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But if you weren't actually speeding and have the time and money to do it then fight the good fight, never give up! (the court system needs your money)

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All of this is now for the appeals court and I can't present new evidence, only try and indicate where the court erred, rights violated, etc.

The reason that the Municipal / City Courts are kangaroo courts when it comes to traffic violations is that they are a house of cards with the deck stacked in their favor, but if just one person had enough money and time they could cause that whole house of cards to comes crashing down and pave the way for the rest of us. People are sheep when it comes to traffic tickets and don't want to deal with the hassle and definitely don't want to spend big bucks to defend themselves in court. Most courts will give you a plea deal.

I have been unlucky in the past few years and have several tickets from a bunch of crappy speed traps that they were laying all around my general work and home vicinities, during our economic depression of course, so they could keep their jobs and fill the city coffers. Most of them were on roads in the middle of fields near an airport that I drive by on my way to work. 54 in a 35, 64 in 45, and now 84 in a 65, anybody see a pattern, funny how on different roads on different occassions I was always driving 19 MPH over the speed limit which is just 1 MPH below the next higher traffic infraction and point level.

On the day I got stopped for 84 in a 65, I admit I was going the "speed of traffic" and that was probably around 70 MPH (Max 75), but there was 20 other cars in the 6 lane pack that were doing the same speed as me. Of course the sterotype rules, I have a small red semi-sports car (Toyota MR2 Spyder Convertible - Or the poor man's Porche (like a boxter)), so I was the one he decided to stop. I also ride sport bikes, currently a 2005 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R (636 cc) and it is riding season. I also have young kids and always drive safe and within the speed limits when they are riding along with me, so I have several reasons to keep my points down besides just higher insurance rates. If the city prosecutor had offered me a deal then I would have taken it but basically since she didn't, I figured there was no loss in at least going to court over it and hoping the police officer didn't show up. That was one arraingment, 2 two and a half hour trials a month apart, and another hearing on obejctions over the court transcripts to now hopefully the final stretch with the apeals court.

My goose is probaly cooked and aside from the original $305 in fines and 4 points, I have probably spent another$400 to \$500 and about 80 - 90 hours of my time. It has been painful, but I have learned a lot, and what I have mostly learned is that police officers lie on the stand, you can't trust the courts to be fair, and overall the courts have more in their favor when it comes to convicting you than the Casino's in Las Vegas have in house odds.

Regards,

DBAMSJ

Your angle is 7.2 degrees. The chart says that the reading is 98% accurate at about the distances you mentioned. Hint: that's going to be a really bad defense.

Yeah, the main thing I am going for is that LTI says it is "Unacceptable". I doubt LTI has ever made that mistake in a user's manual since. I think this is why they so vigorously objected to my every attempt to officially enter the users manual into evidence. It seem like all the police officer had to do was claim he never saw it before and didn't know what is was and the court would say that I didn't "lay the proper foundation" for it to come into evidence. They did have to ultimately enter it and my LIDAR Graph into the court record as exhibits but not evidence. Hopefully the appeals court will see where the lower court erred but I have to pretty much point that out as I don't think they automatically do a full review. It is all based on my appeal brief that is due in just over a day.

-DBAMSJ

Unless you can determine WHY LTI places the noted limits on the angle of incidence of the radar beam, you are in danger of finding yourself actually arguing that you were traveling faster tnan the alleged 84 MPH. That does not strike me as a winning strategy.

One possible reason might be the potential to pick up reflections from the wheels, portions of which woul be moving much faster than the body of the car. A lot would depend on the geometry of the wheels and the details of the laser beam. If the officer testifies and is believed that he aimed for a flat spot, like the front license mounting surface, that nullify this approach.

The real reason would have to come from LTI.

I would not pin my hopes on that. Failure to recalibrate and certify the device after repairs strikes me as your best argument. If the gun has been checked in the interim your goose is cooked.

You said you were accused of traveling at 84 MPH . The ticket is usually written for something less than the recorded speed (this looks suspiciously like the cop wanted to keep the excess below 20 MPH). Any experienced cop can tell the difference between 65 MPH and 84+ MPH by eyeball. How fast were you really going ?

The officers visual estimate was 85.

I am attaching a photo of my car as the lines of my car would by all accounts make it one of the most difficult cars to target on the road.

-DBAMSJ

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... The officer did say that he targeted my front license plate area, but also included the bumper, etc. Later the Judge in her judgement of me indicated that the officer had targeted my front license plate and that is all she said. Of course by that time it was too late as she had concluded the trial.

The judge neglected to include the word "area". As far as I understand the process, that omission does not overrule the officer's original testimony and is not sufficient grounds for appeal. (IANAL)

... funny how on different roads on different occassions I was always driving 19 MPH over the speed limit which is just 1 MPH below the next higher traffic infraction and point level.

I have had officers tell me straight out that they were writing the citiation for a speed lower than what they observed (and lower than the speed I know I was traveling). I consider that a good thing.

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I have had officers tell me straight out that they were writing the citiation for a speed lower than what they observed (and lower than the speed I know I was traveling). I consider that a good thing.

Hm. That is a good thing, yes, but that means that the officer can write wathever he wants regardless of what the instrument says.

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• 4 weeks later...

This guy won the case upon trial because the device was upon a bridge measuring the cars beneath. That happened in Brussels Belgium.

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