Bill Proposes More Authority For Officers Responding To Wrecks

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala.(WHNT)-If you don’t see it, you can’t cite it. By and large, that’s the code law enforcement officers in Alabama must abide by when arriving at the scene of a wreck. But now state lawmakers are pushing to change the law so officers can have more leeway.

Rep. Mike Ball (R-Madison) is sponsoring House Bill 368, which would remove the “Don’t See, Don’t Cite” requirement. Ball said current statutes help traffic violators avoid arrest on even the most obvious offenses, ranging from running a stop sign to driving without insurance or with a revoked license.

“As a police officer, a lot of times you feel ridiculous not writing a citation for some of these obvious violations,” said Ball, a former Alabama State Trooper. “Even though it didn’t occur in your presence you’ve got a lot of evidence that a violation has occurred…even the violators are surprised that they wouldn’t get a ticket at a wreck.”

A DUI violation is the only traffic offense currently exempt from “Don’t See, Don’t Cite” statutes.

Ball’s bill passed the Alabama House on Thursday, and now awaits a vote in the Senate. The State Troopers Association has endorsed the legislation.

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