HomeFairfax General ForumArrest/Ticket SearchWiki newPictures/VideosChatArticlesLinksAbout
Fairfax County General :  Fairfax Underground fairfax underground logo
Welcome to Fairfax Underground, a project site designed to improve communication among residents of Fairfax County, VA. Feel free to post anything Northern Virginia residents would find interesting.
Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Glados ()
Date: May 03, 2013 11:40AM

I was pulled over the other day because a policeman told me I did a "California Roll" through a stop sign, meaning I didn't come to a complete stop and let my car roll through the stop sign. This was not the case, as I came to a complete stop. The officer did not agree, but thankfully he only gave me a warning.

Now, I could have been pulled over for this by an officer with a less than charming demeanor or an officer who just plum had a bad day. So, considering that, can I legally have a dashboard camera in my car to record events like this for use in court should an officer give me a citation for something I know I didn't do?

I see these used all the time on YouTube, although most of them are used by Europeans, and who can forget that meteorite over Chelyabinsk, Russia? So, can we legally have dashboard cameras here in Fairfax County, or is there some weird law that prevents me from being able to prove my innocence in cases where I suspect fraud or violation of my rights? What if some teenager hits my car and drives off? What if some guy is trying to claim I hit him when he simply just through himself at my vehicle?

Side Question: Is it legal to videotape any police activity in Fairfax County, particularly if I am at a distance from the alleged crime, on my property, and not interfering?

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Gordon Blvd ()
Date: May 03, 2013 11:57AM

all legal, friend.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Devil's Advocate ()
Date: May 03, 2013 12:40PM

Well, you can legally have a dash cam, no law against that.

BUT...

1) There is no guarantee that it will be enough to prove you are innocent.

2) If you are involved in an accident, it can be subpoenaed by the courts and used against you. If you delete it, then you are committing a crime.

3) You can video or photograph from any public location if what you are shooting is in the view of the public eye. That being said, you do have to honor police/fire lines and step back when instructed, and your photos can be subpoenaed as well.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 03, 2013 12:51PM

There is no expectation of privacy in a roadside police encounter, so you are free to record. However, I would inform the cop that you are recording him or her just to be on the up-and-up; cops don't like to not know when they are being recorded. But, a dashcam should be pretty obvious to them.

Also, as a caveat, make sure you have the video set to auto-upload (if possible) because if you happen to encounter a "bad" cop, he or she could decide to confiscate your video and delete anything that makes them look bad. It would probably be an illegal search that would confiscate your camera, but it isn't hard for them to come up with a "reason" to seize it (looked suspicious, might be a weapon, etc.) as possible evidence of a crime you committed when really they just want to get rid of evidence of their wrongdoing. Once seized, police are allowed (based on some tenuously supported court rulings) to go through personal electronic devices to search for evidence against you (essentially, they can go on a fishing expedition, which is not constitutional but has flown in court). So, keep that in mind as well. They have programs that can easily get through most basic password protection so they only real safe means of protecting your videos/data is to encrypt it if possible.

Hope that helps.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Date: May 03, 2013 12:53PM

I've used a dash cam for a while now, no issues. It does, however, call the attention of police occasionally because it resembles a radar detector.

I use the DVR-027


Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 03, 2013 12:58PM

Also, you can record police anywhere in the public domain as long as you don't interfere with the investigation. Police tend to apply this rather liberally in terms of distance from the investigation scene. Some even harass and try to intimidate you when you are a decent distance from the scene. The most important thing to remember is always be civil and courteous -- do not blow up and get emotional as that can quickly get you a disorderly charge. Explain that you know you have the right to record in public, that the police are public servants and therefore they have no expectation of privacy when conducting official duties in public. Again, be sure you have your video auto-uploading because there have been cases where officers have confiscated cameras and deleted the video while charging the recorder with some nonsense charge like "obstruction," "disorderly conduct," or something similar.

Also, you do not have to show ID to an officer if he or she requests it while you are recording (assuming you are not in a car) because it is a voluntary police encounter. It is probably in your best interest to show ID, but you are under no legal obligation to do so unless you are being investigating as having committed or being about to commit a crime, in which case the encounter is not voluntary -- so ask the officer this when he or she asks to see your id.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Glados ()
Date: May 03, 2013 12:59PM

Excellent responses so far.

I'm not so much worried about them deleting anything I record. There are a few ways to recover that data. n me?

Never the less, how much would an "instant upload" camera run me, and how would it instantly upload? The nearest WiFi? Could I use my phone's network to stream it to my computer, if the size of the file is relatively small?

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Glados ()
Date: May 03, 2013 01:00PM

Typos, man.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Hoboharry1 ()
Date: May 03, 2013 01:23PM

Remember Virginia is a one party consent to record state. So that means as long as one party knows that they are being recorded then you are good to go. As to the roadside encounters, if you are in a public place and there is activity within the public view, you can film it. Just make sure that you do not interfere with the activity. However if you do film something and are seen doing such, you must be prepared to be a witness and provide the record of the event. As always remember to be polite and courteous with the police and you should not have any problems.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 03, 2013 01:45PM

Again, most cops are on the up and up and wouldn't care about a dashcam, but some power trip on stuff like this. I don't know about dashcams and uploading but I assume you could link it to your phone's mobile network to upload. There are also ways to recover deleted videos if it came to that, but who wants to have to rely on doing this to save their asses if charged with some nonsense charge? I wouldn't say you have a few days to recover it -- unscrupulous cops will get rid of what they don't want pretty quickly. Again, not trying to make you paranoid, but I view cameras as a way to protect your rights in a police encounter -- some police don't like that idea at all and will f*** with you. One thing I don't understand is why libertarians are against cameras in public because that is "big brother" when having something on video could save you from being convicted of a nonsense charge that a power tripping cop slapped you with because you knew your rights.


Glados Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Excellent responses so far.
>
> I'm not so much worried about them deleting
> anything I record. There are a few ways to recover
> that data. n me?
>
> Never the less, how much would an "instant upload"
> camera run me, and how would it instantly upload?
> The nearest WiFi? Could I use my phone's network
> to stream it to my computer, if the size of the
> file is relatively small?

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Glados ()
Date: May 03, 2013 02:20PM

Recovering deleted photos / videos is just a matter of opening up a simple program, sometimes. My understanding of Libertarians is that they are against cameras for things like traffic, residential areas, etc, but are absolutely for cameras being used to defend freedom, such as a police encounter, should you actually be within the law.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: drivecam user ()
Date: May 03, 2013 02:40PM

The drivecams that are being used on many fleet vehicles have a manual trigger that you can hit to record a traffic stop. They automatically record crashes and hard braking events and send the audio/video right to your inbox.


http://www.drivecam.com/

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 03, 2013 02:43PM

Glados Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Recovering deleted photos / videos is just a
> matter of opening up a simple program, sometimes.
> My understanding of Libertarians is that they are
> against cameras for things like traffic,
> residential areas, etc, but are absolutely for
> cameras being used to defend freedom, such as a
> police encounter, should you actually be within
> the law.

Yeah but those public cameras can save your ass! I see it as a double standard -- so-called libertarians (I consider myself one, but I consider many to be hypocrites) want to be able to record every encounter in public yet they are against public cameras recording their public business. I welcome cameras everywhere in public.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Jitsu ()
Date: May 03, 2013 03:12PM

Prove your innocence? Doesn't the state have to prove your guilt?

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 03, 2013 03:22PM

You would think...but how are you going to argue against an officer who says you are disorderly or resisted arrest or interfered with an investigation (or whatever ticky tack bs charge) when you have no evidence to prove otherwise. The judge will always take the officer's word as evidence in cases like these.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: Bill.N. ()
Date: May 03, 2013 05:45PM

Jitsu Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Prove your innocence? Doesn't the state have to
> prove your guilt?


Clearly you haven't spent time sitting in traffic court.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcam ()
Date: May 03, 2013 05:55PM

I said it before and I'll say it again.

DASH CAM DASH CAM DASH CAM

All the ones listed above are crap. Check out the BlueVue ones or the ITRONICS ITB 100HD. The idea of having them on all the time and always uploading is ridiculous though. Unless you're going to upload 100MB - 2GB everytime you drive your car via your phone, that's not a reasonable thing to do with a dash cam for the most part. I think some have that capabilitiy these days but unless you're connected to wifi from your FIOS connection at home and don't drive any further than your front yard -- it aint gonna work.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: ........ ()
Date: May 03, 2013 06:27PM

I think prime consideration I think to the legality of dashboard cameras is

http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+46.2-1054

"it shall be unlawful for any person to drive a motor vehicle on a highway in the Commonwealth with any object... suspended from any part of the motor vehicle in such a manner as to obstruct the driver's clear view of the highway through the windshield,"

if police want to harass you and see what drug charges they can create, they'll pull you over for this. They've dont it for gps equipment. Even graduation tassels hanging from the rear view mirror.

make sure its mounted in such a way no reasonable person would think it blocks your view.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: 54545 ()
Date: May 03, 2013 06:31PM

print, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustrationprint, branding, editorial design, in-store design
art direction, design, illustration

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: wnrsm ()
Date: May 04, 2013 12:38AM

Here's eesh merging.
Attachments:
ffu 1336066176_merging_in_russia.gif

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: dashcams ()
Date: May 04, 2013 12:52AM

No, you would flip a switch to start uploading as soon as something interesting starts happening. Not sure if this technology exists because I am not familiar with dash cams, but would be nice if it did.

dashcam Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I said it before and I'll say it again.
>
> DASH CAM DASH CAM DASH CAM
>
> All the ones listed above are crap. Check out the
> BlueVue ones or the ITRONICS ITB 100HD. The idea
> of having them on all the time and always
> uploading is ridiculous though. Unless you're
> going to upload 100MB - 2GB everytime you drive
> your car via your phone, that's not a reasonable
> thing to do with a dash cam for the most part. I
> think some have that capabilitiy these days but
> unless you're connected to wifi from your FIOS
> connection at home and don't drive any further
> than your front yard -- it aint gonna work.

Options: ReplyQuote
Re: Legality of Dashboard Cams in Fairfax County
Posted by: ummmmm ()
Date: May 04, 2013 01:35AM

to the OP... so you would plan to have ur dashcam on for every stop sign or right on red or lane change or.... well all the time basically to cover yourself? you do know that EVERYONE breaks some traffic laws at least 5 times a day driving right, this is NoVA afte all...

Options: ReplyQuote


Your Name: 
Your Email (Optional): 
Subject: 
Attach a file
  • No file can be larger than 75 MB
  • All files together cannot be larger than 300 MB
  • 30 more file(s) can be attached to this message
Spam prevention:
Please, enter the code that you see below in the input field. This is for blocking bots that try to post this form automatically.
pEuLE
This forum powered by Phorum.