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Police Forum Police Head Mod: Skidmark
Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 09-29-2012, 04:42 PM   #1
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Red light; grabbing cellphone while dazing off

Corner of renfrew & grandview the light just turned red. I was taking my phone out of my pocket and i was just holding it while staring at mcdonalds dozing off, when an officer pulled beside me and ticketed me for just holding it.

Is that really an offense, to briefly 'hold' the electronic device while the light is freshly red, or is it worth my time to dispute it?
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Old 09-29-2012, 04:46 PM   #2
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I think the bigger issue is you behind the wheel and dozing off. You may be able to dispute it, but you better have a better excuse than "I really wasn't planning on using it. I took it out of my pocket and dozed off at the red light."
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Old 09-29-2012, 04:47 PM   #3
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Yes, its on the link you posted yourself and I don't believe you'd win a dispute. The relevant parts are:

Quote:
Prohibition against use of electronic device while driving
214.2 (1) A person must not use an electronic device while driving or operating a motor vehicle on a highway.

"use", in relation to an electronic device, means one or more of the following actions:

(a) holding the device in a position in which it may be used;
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Old 09-29-2012, 05:13 PM   #4
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Initially I literally took it out of my pocket and was gonna lie it down beside my bag (which was on my passenger seat), and then yeah; i saw a civic that was just flushed and i was busy staring at it struggling to get into mcdonald's parking lot.
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Old 09-29-2012, 05:25 PM   #5
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Taking it out of your pocket falls under "holding the device in a position in which it may be used".

If your phone had no battery and was turned off you maybe could argue that it was not in a position in which it may be used? But somehow I don't think you'll be able to convince a judge to believe that.
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Old 09-29-2012, 05:28 PM   #6
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Yes, touching the cell phone can get you ticketed if seen by the officer even if you don't plan on using it.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:18 PM   #7
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Last officer who gave me a ticket for texting and driving told me to keep it out of arms reach because If i do get pulled over they will assume it's in arms reach to be used. So he said put it in the glove box or center console..
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Old 10-02-2012, 02:24 PM   #8
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Taking it out of your pocket falls under "holding the device in a position in which it may be used".
This is why if I ever touch my phone while in the car I hold it like I'd hold a dead mouse by the tail.

The onus should be on the officer to prove that you were holding it in a way that permitted its use. IE - cradling it in the palm of your hand as if you were about to poke at the screen with your other hand.

Take it to court, hopefully the officer will be able to describe in great detail exactly how you were holding it.
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Old 10-02-2012, 02:53 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by sebberry View Post
This is why if I ever touch my phone while in the car I hold it like I'd hold a dead mouse by the tail.

The onus should be on the officer to prove that you were holding it in a way that permitted its use. IE - cradling it in the palm of your hand as if you were about to poke at the screen with your other hand.

Take it to court, hopefully the officer will be able to describe in great detail exactly how you were holding it.
Err.... first off, why would you have it in your hand with NO intention to use it...

Secondly, to the OP, why would you take it out of your pocket and place it on the passenger seat with NO intention to use it? If you had no intention to use it while you were in your vehicle, there would be no need to have the phone anywhere within arms reach or in your hand.

Oh wait!! You were preparing the phone for when you ran into an emergency where you had to use it to save someones life, or were trapped in your vehicle!!!! GOTCHA!
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Old 10-02-2012, 03:00 PM   #10
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Err.... first off, why would you have it in your hand with NO intention to use it...
I've had to move it before if it was rattling around with my keys in the cupholder. I've also had to take it out of my pocket to hand to my passenger. Sometimes I've moved it out of the cupholder to place a cup there instead.

Don't worry though, I've replaced all interaction with my phone at red lights with brushing my hair, clipping my nails and swapping CDs. All completely legal and in no way distracting.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:10 PM   #11
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Err.... first off, why would you have it in your hand with NO intention to use it...

Secondly, to the OP, why would you take it out of your pocket and place it on the passenger seat with NO intention to use it? If you had no intention to use it while you were in your vehicle, there would be no need to have the phone anywhere within arms reach or in your hand.

Oh wait!! You were preparing the phone for when you ran into an emergency where you had to use it to save someones life, or were trapped in your vehicle!!!! GOTCHA!
Sometimes when I'm doing long drives, it gets uncomfortable to have my pockets full so I sometimes just take out my phone and leave it somewhere. I rarely take long drives so this isn't something I would remember to do right away when I get in the car.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:56 PM   #12
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I've had to move it before if it was rattling around with my keys in the cupholder. I've also had to take it out of my pocket to hand to my passenger. Sometimes I've moved it out of the cupholder to place a cup there instead.

Don't worry though, I've replaced all interaction with my phone at red lights with brushing my hair, clipping my nails and swapping CDs. All completely legal and in no way distracting.
No one said those other activities weren't distracting, but it would be unreasonable to expect the province to add in specific offences like "driving while clipping nails" etc. People using their phones is an issue, and if you want to complain about getting a 167 dollar ticket for using your electronic device, next time why don't you ask for a "driving without due care and attention", which will run you 368 bucks. Because that is what you would get if there was not "cell phone" law.

And now that you all know having your cell phone in your hand is illegal.. chuck it on your back seat or glove box so it won't "rattle" or cause "discomfort"
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:10 PM   #13
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No, having your cellphone in your hand isn't illegal. Holding it in a way it may be used is illegal.

I'd be more than happy if the cell phone fine was $368 - blabbering on it and texting while driving is after all akin to driving drunk. Heck, expand the penalty to an IRP and impound.

If you think "moving" your phone is the same as "using" or "operating" it, then you might need to rethink the issue.

And why would it be unreasonable for the province to add "clipping nails" to the infraction list? They regulate everything else...
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:20 PM   #14
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No, having your cellphone in your hand isn't illegal. Holding it in a way it may be used is illegal.

I'd be more than happy if the cell phone fine was $368 - blabbering on it and texting while driving is after all akin to driving drunk. Heck, expand the penalty to an IRP and impound.

If you think "moving" your phone is the same as "using" or "operating" it, then you might need to rethink the issue.

And why would it be unreasonable for the province to add "clipping nails" to the infraction list? They regulate everything else...
I don't think that moving it is the same as using it, but by definition of the MVA, it is. Since you know it is, there really is no excuse for you to get caught with it in your hand. Knowing you though, you would do it just to argue with the PO that issues you the ticket. You can argue all you want about it, but at the end of the day, it is the responsibility of the driver to be aware of ALL the laws/regulations of the MVA. If they don't, they will get issued a fine, or if they are lucky, a warning.
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:33 PM   #15
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At the end of the day, the MVA doesn't outlaw moving the phone.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:42 PM   #16
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At the end of the day, the MVA doesn't outlaw moving the phone.
use that in traffic court...
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:11 PM   #17
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How about mounted on the Center Console like a GPS?
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:34 PM   #18
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How about mounted on the Center Console like a GPS?
Just don't dare touch it. But feel free to touch your car's radio and climate controls all you want.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:02 PM   #19
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Sebb,....must be a lonley life being a Caped Crusader who didn't make the Avengers' draft cut.
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Old 10-09-2012, 12:06 AM   #20
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If it's a flip phone and it was closed, it couldn't be used in that position.
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Old 10-09-2012, 04:16 AM   #21
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If it's a flip phone and it was closed, it couldn't be used in that position.
My old flip phone could, in loud speaker mode.
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Old 10-09-2012, 05:47 AM   #22
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Can you argue "I was about to call 911 because I thought I saw something dangerous to my right but changed my mind"?
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:58 AM   #23
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You could also argue that you were rehearsing your role in a Star Trek revival show where you have to beam the crew back to the ship.
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:22 AM   #24
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You could also argue that you were rehearsing your role in a Star Trek revival show where you have to beam the crew back to the ship.
i was expecting a trailer park boys reference from you
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:48 AM   #25
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OP keep peanut butter in a plastic sandwich bag inside your undies


Get pulled over, reach into peanut butter sandwich bag.

Pull out hand covered in what appears to be feces, lick peanut butter.


.......

End up in psychiatric ward but avoid getting ticketed


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