Have you ever been pulled over by an unmarked car that you never suspected belonged to a law enforcement officer? Drivers throughout the US and New Hampshire can be stopped and punished by cops who drive vehicles with little law enforcement identifiers on them. When it comes to road safety, many people believe that law enforcement should have no limitations in their powers and discretion to pull people over. Should law enforcement officers be using unmarked cars in the course of traffic stops, though?
“Police should be able to do whatever is necessary in order to protect us!” is a common refrain that many of us have heard. We have written extensively about the multiple court rulings which clearly stated that law enforcement has no obligation to protect anyone; their only duty is to enforce laws passed by politicians.
As The Liberty Block mentioned in this article, there are thousands of potential reasons that a cop could use as justification for pulling someone over. Of course, cops do not really need a reason at all to stop a vehicle, especially considering that the courts consider driving not to be a ‘right’, but rather a privilege granted to us by our gracious owners.
A bill proposed by Representative Warden (R-Manchester) and Representative Keans (D-Rochester) for the 2020 session would require all law enforcement vehicles in New Hampshire to “…Have distinctive, contrasting markings and identification on both sides of such vehicles rendering such vehicles clearly distinguishable from non-emergency vehicles.”
In the event that a serious operation requires the use of an unmarked vehicle, the bill prevents such vehicles from conducting traffic stops. HB1583 also requires police vehicles to have law enforcement license plates. This bipartisan bill would help improve police and community relations by making police more transparent, accountable, and peaceful. New Hampshire residents do not seem to enjoy law enforcement officers who hide in the shadows or disguise their cars with dark-on-dark designs in order to ‘catch’ people committing petty traffic violations. As the old saying goes: “If they have nothing to hide, they should have nothing to fear”. Isn’t it time that police stop hiding from citizens?
The House has killed this bill.
This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Liberty Block or any of its members. We welcome all forms of serious feedback and debate.