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Cops fight over speeding ticket technology accuracy

I have been thinking about this AP story more and more lately. If anyone else was fighting the accuracy of a speed-detection device this would be a non-story, but because it is a retired deputy who says he is trying to maintain his “faith” in the justice system…well, that’s just sad and amusing all at the same time:

A retired sheriff’s deputy nevertheless hopes to beat the long odds of the law by setting the performance of a police officer’s radar gun against the accuracy of the GPS tracking device he installed in his teenage stepson’s car.

The retired deputy, Roger Rude, readily admits his 17-year-old stepson, Shaun Malone, enjoys putting the pedal to the metal. That’s why he and Shaun’s mother insisted on putting a global positioning system that monitors the location and speed of the boy’s Toyota Celica.


“I’m not trying to get a guilty kid off,” Rude said. “I’ve always had faith in our justice system. I would like to see the truth prevail and I would like Shaun to see that the system works.”

Truth prevail? Everyone knows the technology is wildly inaccurate and the courts go to some length to defend their weaknesses. The truth is that radar is inaccurate.

Our network intrusion detection sensors are also inaccurate, but at the end of the day the “smoke comes from fire” line of reasoning usually prevails and if there is enough circumstantial evidence and the accused are brought to trial then “justice” is often done in spite of the initial details rather than because of them.

What is your faith in radar speed detection, especially after you drive by one of the giant billboards that inaccurately display your speed? Those things seem like a subtle anti-radar advertising campaign.

Nonetheless, I hope the retired deputy is able to advance the courts’ understanding around technology used to monitor speed, as well as the integrity aspect of information security.

Posted in Security.

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  1. AP says

    This is interesting, as I was ticketed for speeding a few months ago; when pulled over, I argued regarding the speed I was clocked at, as I just happened to be looking at my spedometer when I saw him point the “gun” at me. He didn’t give me too much grief and conceded to my number, which only leads me to believe what this article implies. Yeah, I was guilty; can guilt be measured in degrees? I say “yes”, when it translates into dollars..

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