Thursday, September 08, 2005

Can They Do That?

Now that I have a few regular readers (but fewer in Colorado Springs now that I'm not commenting on Ted Haggard), I have a question for my assembled readers.

A few weeks ago, while we were in Ventura, we were stopped at a sobriety check point. The police officer asked for my license and then asked if I had been drinking, both of which seemed reasonable given the purpose of the stop.

But then when he noticed that I wasn't local, he asked me where I was going, where I was coming from, and what I was doing there.

So, can he ask me that? Or more to the point, can I refuse to answer?

I mean I understand the purpose of sobriety stops, and I know they've been declared legal, but this seemed over a line.

What do you guys think?


Gregg Koskela said...

I think you can shoot them over that.

Bob Ramsey said...


Seriously. Can you answer a cop's question by telling him it's none of his business?

kathy said...

Bob, I checked with my legal advisor husband whose sole authority on this subject is that he’s ridden along with our sheriff’s deputy friend from college several times over the years. He has heard his deputy friend ask questions like, “Can I see what’s in your pockets?” and watched said idiot criminal empty his pockets of stuff including marijuana and all the necessary paraphernalia to smoke it. Needless to say, deputy friend chuckled all the way back to his car knowing that if the guy had said no, he’d have been on his merry way.

I’m not saying all police officers are masters at playing head games – but this friend is. He says it's not his job to inform citizens what their rights are. It's his job to catch them breaking the law any way he can.

Gregg, what are you thinking?!!