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Indiana Supreme Court Rules Legal Window Tint Can Still Get Drivers Busted

Window tint

The Indiana Supreme Court says that even if a motorist has window tint that is well within the legal range, they can still be pulled over for it.

The state recently ruled that regardless if a driver’s car window tint complies with state law, police officers are still well within their legal right to stop any vehicle they believe has tinting that is too dark.

However, even though an officer can issue a citation to drivers with window tint they believe makes it difficult for the occupants to see outside, the violation may be subject to dismissal if the driver can prove his windows have 30 percent visible light transmittance.

The latest ruling is based on a 2011 incident involving an Indianapolis police officer and Erving Sanders, in which the officer pulled over Sanders’ 1991 Chevrolet Suburban for window tint that he believed to be too dark. It was later determined that Sanders’ windows had 38 percent transmittance of light – perfectly legal in Indiana.

Still, the routine stop uncovered that Sanders was in possession of marijuana and cocaine. Sanders’ attorney argued that all drug possession charges should be dropped because the officer was wrong in stopping a vehicle because of window tint that complied with state law.

Chief Justice Brent Dickson ultimately found the officer acted in good faith and that the traffic stop was not unlawful.

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