640 N.E.2d 271 (Ohio Co. 1993), 93 TRC 6668, New Lebanon v. Blankenship
|Docket Nº:||93 TRC 6668AB.|
|Citation:||640 N.E.2d 271, 65 Ohio Misc.2d 1|
|Opinion Judge:||JEFFREY E. FROELICH, Judge.|
|Party Name:||VILLAGE OF NEW LEBANON v. BLANKENSHIP. [*]|
|Attorney:||Michael V. Lewis, for defendant Charles B. Blankenship. [65 Ohio Misc.2d 2] Jeffrey Startzman, New Lebanon Prosecutor, for plaintiff. Michael V. Lewis, for defendant Charles B. Blankenship.|
|Case Date:||December 23, 1993|
|Court:||County Court of Ohio|
The defendant has moved to suppress the evidence resulting from the stop of the defendant based on the belief that there was no probable cause or even articulable suspicion to warrant the stop and the subsequent citation for driving under the influence, a violation of R.C. 4511.19(A)(1). It is stipulated that the defendant was operating a motor vehicle in the plaintiff's jurisdiction at approximately 1:30 a.m. At that time and place, an officer in a marked cruiser and in uniform observed the defendant weaving within his lane. It is also stipulated that the road at that point is one lane in both directions with no marked center line. Although the area is residential, there was no other traffic in the area and no signs of any pedestrian activity.
The defendant was cited for violating R.C. 4511.33. That section reads:
"Whenever any roadway has been divided into two or more clearly marked lanes for traffic, or whenever within municipal corporations traffic is lawfully moving in two or more substantially continuous lines in the same direction, the following rules apply:
"(A) A vehicle * * * shall be driven, as nearly as is practicable, entirely within a single lane or line of traffic and shall not be moved from such lane or line until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety."
Since this road is not clearly marked with lanes for traffic, the prosecutor has requested an amendment to charge a violation of R.C. 4511.25, which reads: [65 Ohio Misc.2d 3]
"Upon all roadways of sufficient width, a vehicle or trackless trolley shall be driven upon the right half of the roadway, except as follows:
"(1) When overtaking and passing another vehicle * * * or when making a left turn * * *.
"(2) When an obstruction exists * * *."
Both the prosecutor and the defense attorney framed the question, and seek a definitive opinion for future reference and guidance on the single issue of, "whether or not weaving in one's own lane is sufficient cause to stop a vehicle?"
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