“Do you have anything else back there? Weapons? Drugs? Dead bodies?” is what the Arizona police officer asked us during our pullover on Interstate 17.
Our offense according to the ticket was this:
28-949. Selling or using lamps
A. A person shall not have for sale, sell or offer for sale for use on or as a part of the equipment of a motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer or shall not use on any such vehicle a reflector that is required by this article, head lamp, auxiliary driving lamp, rear lamp, signal lamp or parts of any of the foregoing that tend to change the original design or performance unless the lamps or reflectors are of a type that has been submitted to and approved by the department.
As the cop explained to us, we need to have a white light illuminating the license plate.
28-931. Lamp colors
2. The light illuminating the license plate or the light emitted by a backup lamp shall be white.
As you can see below, we have a working light over the license plate.
A few things that bothered me about the stop:
- The informal interrogation about our jobs and destination. They didn’t seem to have anything to do with a out of code light.
- Taking Coco’s driver’s license and running it, even though she wasn’t driving.
- The twenty minute wait while he tried to get a search warrant for our vehicle. When one couldn’t be obtained we got the lame excuse… “Sorry, the computers were down.”
- When I asked the cop what I needed to do to fix the light, he mumbled something about fixing a bracket and a few other things that made no sense.
Not against cops doing their job, but getting a bit tired of being pulled over for bullshit offenses.
If he had searched the vehicle, he definitely wouldn’t have found any dead bodies.