Been ticketed for a 15" touchscreen in my car. I'm preparing my defense...
So last month I was pulled over here in Southern California and ticketed for having a 15" touchscreen in my car being powered by a "headless" laptop. You can check out my build here. I also have a YouTube video of my setup.
Here was the conversation with the officer:
OFFICER: So what'cha got there?
ME: A 15" touchscreen.
OFFICER: You can't have that.
ME: Yes I can.
OFFICER: No you can't.
ME: Then what about all the GPS devices and in-car displays out there?
OFFICER: They can't play video.
ME: Yes they can.
OFFICER: No they can't.
It was at that point that I realized that I was not going to convince this guy of the color of the sky let alone anything else he'd set his mind to. I also hadn't really thought of preparing a defense for what I had installed and drove for nearly 4 years now. Hell, I'd been pulled over SO many times before and NEVER had an officer even consider this to be a possibly illegal setup. In fact, most of the officers that asked me about it (and very few even bothered to ask) thought it was rather cool more than anything else. In any event, I have a court date the end of August and I'm preparing my arguments and defense of the matter and figured I'd solicit your thoughts on the matter...
The California Vehicle Code regarding this issue is as follows:
27602. (a) A person shall not drive a motor vehicle if a television receiver, a video monitor, or a television or video screen, or any other( )1 similar means of visually displaying a television broadcast or video signal that produces entertainment or business applications, is operating and is located in the motor vehicle at a point forward of the back of the driverís seat, or is operating and the monitor, screen, or display is visible to the driver while driving the motor vehicle.
(b) Subdivision (a) does not apply to the following equipment when installed in a vehicle:
(1) A vehicle information display.
(2) A global positioning display.
(3) A mapping display.
I have highlighted two sections of the vehicle code that I think are relevant to my defense. First of all, I have removed all video codecs from my XP setup so technically my laptop isn't even capable of playing video. That should cover the first section of the vehicle code. Secondly, my system is running both a GPS and mapping display so I think that creates an exemption even if the first part didn't fly...
Still, what do you guys think about my case and my chances?