If a police officer says he saw you speeding, then you were speeding.

The Ohio Supreme Court today ruled 5-1 that a police officer’s visual estimate of speed is enough to convict a motorist of speeding, as long as the officer is trained and certified by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy or a similar organization, and has experience in visually estimating speed.

The court upheld the 2008 conviction of motorist Mark Jenney, who was stopped by Copley police officer Christopher R. Santimarino for speeding in a 60 mph zone on Ohio 21.

“Rational triers of fact could find a police officer’s testimony regarding his unaided visual estimation of a vehicle’s speed, when supported by evidence that the officer is trained, certified by OPOTA or a similar organization, and experienced in making such estimations, sufficient to establish beyond a reasonable doubt the defendant’s speed. Independent verification of the vehicle’s speed is not necessary to support a conviction for speeding,” Justice Maureen O’Connor wrote for the majority.

Justice Terrence O’Donnell dissented, saying, “I do not agree that such testimony per se is sufficient evidence to support a conviction for speeding. Like any other witness, a police officer’s credibility is to be determined by the jury or other fact finder.”

Article courtesy cleveland.com

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