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Added 11-25-17

2017 Appeal Decision - People v. Damon

This case is an example of a speed trap defense to a speeding ticket.

The defendant was doing 50 in a 35 zone, in the City of Santa Monica (Los Angeles County). 

The surveyed 85th was 41 or 42.  The City's engineer chose to post the street as a 35, and wrote that the lowered speed was justified by fact that the street was in a "residential area."

In the initial trial, and again in his appeal, the defendant argued that the residential nature of the area was something that would be readily apparent to a driver (he got the officer to testify to that) and thus could not be used as justification for the lowering of a speed limit.

A three judge panel in the Appellate Division of the Los Angeles Superior Court agreed with the defendant, and reversed the lower court's decision.

  This decision has not been published, so cannot be cited as precedent in other cases, except in Los Angeles County.  The general issue of which decisions get published, and which don't, is under study.  See for more information.

Click on these links for the documents in Damon's appeal:

Defendant's Opening Brief
Appellate Panel's Decision

These materials may be freely copied and distributed, so long as credit is given to .

Many other cases and /or transcripts are available - see the Index to Transcripts, Briefs, and Court Decisions.

Santa Monica does not have red light cameras.