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Police stop checking window tint, flex constitutional rights appropriate for situation?

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Active Member
Look Hulu. If a cop sees what he has reason to believe are over tinted windows that is probable cause to stop you. Should you refuse to allow him to check your tint with a light meter or a card then he will simply issue the ticket based on his visual examination. If you want to be an a-hole at the time he can simply say that the car is not safe to drive and impound the car and then he will have all the time he needs to test it.
1. I have not done this which is why I am asking what the law is on it.
2. Any criminal defense lawyer will tell you to never talk to the police and never consent to a search of your car.
3. Following the constitution does not make you an A-hole. Cops swore an oath to the constitution. This is not the grand inquisitional which people are required by force to incriminate themselves.

There was recently a vet who was extremely polite and courteous to a cop he encountered while traveling to visit his daughter in California. The cop stole the vet's life savings and I think left him with $10 stranded on the side of the road. The Vet did not even break any law to justify the stop to begin with let alone having all his monkey taken from him via civil asset forfeiture. I would ask who is the A-hole in that situation?
Lawyers who have watched the video said that the VET did nothing illegal but the only thing he did " wrong" was talk to the cop and allow a search of his car. I'll link you the story if you are interested.


Active Member
Hulu has a lot of questions. Most (but not all) are related to his judgment-collection woes.
Judgement collection is a complicated process and not common knowledge for most regular people not involved in the legal system even with normal cases. Let along against someone who will pop up from state to state though a network of UPS stores, virtual offices, PO. boxes, etc..

While we on the subject of law enforcement. Are you even allowed to have a UPS store as your home address on your driver license ?


Active Member
That will depend on the laws of the state issuing the license.

This is one of those thing like " when you got your driver license, you signed a paper saying that X,Y and Z. So you agreed to these terms.
So if I am traveling out of state which did not issue me the driver license.....



Active Member
Well...first of all, in order for this encounter to occur, the cop must have pulled over the motorist (for what?) OR it must be something where the cop and motorist happen to be in the same place at the same time.

Second, the 4th Amendment simply says that searches and seizures must be "reasonable" and that warrants must be supported by probable cause. If an officer has properly pulled over a motorist or otherwise has reason to believe a car's windows are excessively tinted, then it would be reasonable to conduct a search (no warrant is needed). The 5th Amendment doesn't seem to have anything to do with this situation.

Third, assuming nothing illegal has happened before the encounter and the motorist refuses to cooperate with further checking the windows, the officer could reasonably remove the motorist from the vehicle in order to conduct a search, including checking the tint of the windows.
Cop did a U-turn on the highway tearing up the grass in the medium over the window tint along which was extremely strange situation. That was the one and only thing they seem to care about as well as a lot of probing questions into my destination and purpose for traveling. It was an interstate highway and people travel on that road were probably not even from the state or had anything to do with anyone in that state. It was a rural state which was between 2 destinations.

Like I said before, I think my car may have fit the profile on something else they were trying to do like looking for drugs or something to this effect. I think they were told to profile big cars with tinted windows.

When you say " to conduct a search" do you mean of the car? I don't think that window tint along is probably cause for anything beyond the window itself. Are you saying they can tear apart your car looking for anything because of tint of the windows along?

No police sniffing dog, no " I smell drugs" no, I see suspicious bag on the floor, etc... Just window tint along?


Active Member
Follow up question: Why do you believe that a tint meter needs to be used to issue a ticket?
Well, the tint meter will give a scientific measurement as evidence to be used in court. Sort of like a radar gun can allow them to write a ticket saying an exact speed vs a cop saying like " oh, he look like he was going fast, no idea how fast"

There was this guy on youtube who was a bit of a joker and he was playing " music" over his convertible car radio very loud that sounded like a car traveling very fast with the engine revving up even though he was traveling very slow, in fact under the speed limit. He was also in a Ferrari or Lamborghini at the time too so the car look fast even standing still.

Anyway the cop pulled him over and started saying how he saw him speeding and street racing, etc.. The joke being the sounds were all artificial being played over the radio and the car has not been speeding or racing but may have appeared that way.

While this guy did go out of his way to prank the cop for a youtube video, there are situation in which driving a stick shift you may downshift into a lower gear which is to slow you down using the engine however the engine will make the sound as if you are speeding up briefly.

If you are going down a mountain, this method will save your breaks.

Any event, from the point of view of a cop, they will hear an engine sounding like its speeding when the car is actually slowing down from its current speed.

So are you saying a cop can issue a ticket without proof but based off a feeling and its the same as if he had a radar gun or tint meter?


Senior Member, Non-Attorney
Well, the tint meter will give a scientific measurement as evidence to be used in court. Sort of like a radar gun can allow them to write a ticket saying an exact speed vs a cop saying like " oh, he look like he was going fast, no idea how fast"
Cops are trained in estimation. Once they have issued the ticket, the cop will testify that, in his trained estimation, the tint exceeded the legal limit. If your only proof is "no, it doesn't, then you lose. That means you will need to prove that your tint falls within the legal limit. The same thing applies to speed.

So are you saying a cop can issue a ticket without proof but based off a feeling and its the same as if he had a radar gun or tint meter?
No, they can issue a ticket based on an estimation, for which they have been trained. With no contrary evidence beyond the defendant's biased, self-serving claim that "it's not true", the defendant will lose.


Senior Member
I have had my car tint for years and driven all over the place without a problem in my home state.
I ventured out for a road trip across the country and find that even know my own state did not seem to care about the window tint or did most other states, there was 1 state in particular in which it seem that ALL the cops were focus on window tint in a major way. They even had devices to measure the window tint that you had to place the window between this device to measure the light. This was on an interstate highway and probably most of the cars were just passing though the state and were not residences.

The cop check the tint, said it was too dark but let me go with a warning. As I drove along, like cop after cop was following me but then stop following. Cops even driving 70 MPH on the opposite side of the highway would do a full U-turn to follow my car. It felt like they were running some kind of operation and somehow cars with tint may have fit the profile.

Never had problems with it years before and years after but for that 1 day in that 1 state, I had the attention of many cops in this interstate highway just passing though.

So I am wondering if you can refuse a tint test in the same way that you can refused car search. If its a phishing expedition that requires your consent or if you don't have a choice in the matter. See, if you live in a state with very intense sun, the tinting windows make a lot of sense to protect your eyes from sun damage however when you go to states which don't have that same level of sun, those window tint probably look more out of place.
You refuse a police request at your peril.

If you are driving in other states, you are expected to know and obey their traffic laws.

Perhaps what you need is a pair of good sunglasses.
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