New Initiative Set to Increase Traffic Stops in Indiana
As reported by various local news sources, a recently announced initiative may lead to an increase in traffic stops in Indianapolis this week. Between September 23, 2023, and September 30, 2023, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD), in conjunction with the Indiana State Police, intends ramp up traffic patrols in an effort to combat reckless and dangerous driving, placing the majority of their attention on a handful of problem areas throughout the city.
While this initiative will certainly result in an uptick of the issuance of traffic tickets, IMPD Sgt. Javed Richards told WTHR News that, “the focus is essentially on correcting behavior. We know tickets do help in correcting behavior but also speaking to someone, giving them a warning, and educating them more on a one-on-one conversation, that is another way of actually correcting behavior.”
If you are pulled over this week during initiative, and charged with a criminal offense or infraction, feel free to contact an Indianapolis traffic attorney from Keffer Hirschauer LLP. Our team has extensive experience in Indianapolis traffic court and can help mitigate the legal and financial consequences you face as a result of a moving violation. To speak with one of our Indianapolis defense attorneys today, call 317-857-0160 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.
Areas Expected to See an Increase in Traffic Stops in Indianapolis this Week
As reported by WRTV News, this initiative will target a variety of areas and is likely to lead to a dramatic increase in traffic stops throughout Indianapolis this week. The impacted areas span all six IMPD districts, with the Southeastern district of Indianapolis receiving the most attention.
- Washington St. / Delaware St.
- Washington St. / Pennsylvania St.
- Capital Ave / Maryland St.
- Washington St. / Illinois St.
- 10th Street from Emerson to Arlington
- Washington Street from Emerson to Arlington
- 56th Street from Emerson Way to I-465
- Shadeland Ave from I-465 tie-in to 10th St
- 86th & Monon Trail
- 25th & Sherman
- 3800 North Meridian Corridor
- 16th and Pennsylvania
- 6100 Primrose Avenue
- 7900-8600 N Payne Rd.
- 4800-7900 W 56th St
- 5600 N High School Rd.
- 5600 N. Lafayette Rd.
- 5600 N. Georgetown Rd.
- 5600-8600 N. Michigan Rd.
- W. 38th St between High School and Moller Rd.
- Madison Av. between Terrace Av. and Thompson Rd. (Late evening into early morning, Thurs through Saturday)
- E. Raymond St. between Shelby St. and Southeastern Av. (Daytime during school hours)
- E. Washington St. between Pine St. and Emerson Av. (Daytime to 22:00)
- English Ave. between Rural St. and Emerson Av. (Daytime during school hours)
- US31S between Southport Rd. and Countyline Rd. (All normal work hours until early evening, 2000 to 0200 Thursday through Saturday)
- Southeastern Av. between Prospect St. and Raymond St. (business hours)
- S. Keystone Av. between Prospect and Hanna Av. (business hours)
- South half of Haughville – White River W to Tibbs and Michigan St to 10th St.
- West Washington Street – Belmont to Holt.
- Southern Mars Hill – Lynhurst to Holt and Troy to Kentucky.
- Mid Wayne Township – High School Rd to Lynhurst and Rockville Rd to 10th St.
Reckless Driving Laws in Indiana
According to the IMPD, this increase in traffic stops in Indianapolis this week is aimed at curbing dangerous and reckless driving. While to some this phrasing may sound like a general description, it’s actually a reference to a serious criminal offense. Per Indiana Code 9-21-8-52, a person may be charged with reckless driving in Indiana when caught committing one of the following vehicular behaviors:
- Driving at such an unreasonably high rate of speed that you are endangering the safety or property of others, or blocking the proper flow of traffic
- Driving at such an unreasonably low rate of speed, under the circumstances, that you are endangering the safety or property of others, or blocking the proper flow of traffic
- Passing another vehicle from the rear while on a slope or curve where vision is obstructed for a distance of less than 500 feet ahead
- Driving in and out of a line of traffic, except as otherwise permitted
- Speeding up or refusing to give one-half (1/2) of the roadway to a driver overtaking and desiring to pass
At a minimum, the offense of reckless driving in Indiana is a Class C misdemeanor. However, this may be enhanced to a Class B or Class misdemeanor if certain circumstances exist, such as damage to another person’s property or bodily injury to another person. In addition, a driver who passes a school bus stopped (with arm extended) on a roadway or a private road may be charged with a Class A misdemeanor or a Level 6 felony, if their actions cause bodily injury to another person. Finally, when a person’s reckless driving caused the death of another person, they can be charged with a Level 5 felony. This is a very serious criminal charge that could, under the Indiana sentencing guidelines, result in a sentence of up to six years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
How to Handle Traffic Stops in Indianapolis
In general, the best way to handle traffic stops in Indianapolis is to stay calm, be polite, and know your rights. When you notice police lights in your rearview, flip on your car’s turn signal and pull over to the side of the road as soon as you safely can do so. When the officer approaches you, roll down your window and engage the officer in a polite manner while keeping your hands in a place where the officer can clearly see them, like on the steering wheel.
Under the stop and identify statute in Indiana, if prompted, you are required to provide the officer either your name, address, and date of birth, or your driver’s license. You’ll also need to provide them with your registration and, under some circumstances, your car insurance. Beyond that, you have no legal obligation to answer any other question from the officer, and generally, should refrain from doing so.
This is especially true, if the suspects you drunk driving in Indianapolis, and asks you “how much have you had to drink today?” Legally, you do not have to answer this question, and if you do, your statement could be used against you in court and pay a role the officer’s establishment of probable cause for your arrest.
It’s also important to remember that if the officer asks to search your vehicle, you are well within your legal rights to say, “no.” However, given Indiana’s search warrant laws, a warrantless search may occur if the officer has probable cause to believe that vehicle contains contraband AND the vehicle is in the same location where the original traffic stop took place. When a warrantless search of this nature occurs, the officer’s search can extend to all parts of the vehicle where they believe contraband may be located, including the trunk, center console, glove compartment, etc.
If you’ve been pulled over during this period of increased traffic stops in Indianapolis and charged with a criminal offense, like possession of paraphernalia, a DUI, or unlawful possession of a firearm, you’ll want to contact an Indianapolis criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Doing so will better ensure that everything is being done to protect your rights, freedoms, and future.
Need to Speak with an Indianapolis Defense Attorney?
The Indianapolis law office of Keffer Hirschauer LLP was founded by two former deputy prosecutors, Bradley Keffer and Tom Hirschauer III, who have years of experience both prosecuting and defending Hoosier charged with criminal offenses. They are very familiar with Indianapolis criminal and traffic courts and work tirelessly to secure the best possible outcome for their clients – whether that be a reduction or dismissal of charges, or a not–guilty verdict. To speak with an Indianapolis defense attorney from Keffer Hirschauer LLP today call 317-857-0160 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.