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JD
JD, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1335
Experience:  Over 11 years in practice as a litigator ... civil and criminal
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My question is that my driver license was suspended and i was

Customer Question

My question is that my driver license was suspended and i was at work. the officer ran my plates as it was sitting in company parking lot, with no one in it. he was there on another matter with a client i take care of. he ran my plate and proceded to tell my employer. can he do that? he had no reason to run my plate, which cuased me to be fired.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  NewYorkLaw101 replied 5 years ago.
Hi and thanks for using Just Answer
Unfortunately, an officer can run your license plate if he/she feels that there is probable cause. In your case, you stated that you were just sitting in your vehicle. I am unsure as to what time of day it was or the circumstances surrounding you sitting in your vehicle. In addition a plate number is XXXXX private information as it is in plain sight and accessible and you do not have to give a police officer permission to run a plate.
I wish I had a better answer for you
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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I was not sitting in my car or no where standing by my car. i was at work and was coming from park with client. he was there to talk to her on another matter.. he at some point ran plate and informed my manager that my license had been suspended.. how is it that he has a right to tell my employer when that wasn't what he was there for and i wasn't in the vehicle.
Expert:  NewYorkLaw101 replied 5 years ago.
Okay, I am not sure if the police officer had the right to tell your boss that your license was suspended however it is not clear as to why he/she ran your plate to begin with. Now you indicated that he arrived at your job for something else, do you know if that dealt with any type of vehicles?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Not for sure. but he came to talk to her about a matter that she was in volved in and had nothing to do with me..According to my job, he was there on another matter.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
that matter was to talk to my client
Expert:  NewYorkLaw101 replied 5 years ago.
Okay, now I am unsure how running the license plate of your vehicle would show that your license was in fact suspended as he would have had to run a drivers license check as well - was your vehicle also uninsured?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
yes vehicle was insured.
Expert:  JD replied 5 years ago.

Hello. I am a criminal lawyer and I will do my best to answer your question. You said the officer was "there" on another matter. Was your car parked in a public place that was viewable to the general public? If not... why was the officer there (be specific)? Also, do you know why the officer's attention was drawn to your vehicle and how many vehicles were in the lot?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
the car was parked in at a group home for my client wtih 3 other vehicles in the lot.. it is pretty much a group home for our clients.. it is viewable to public. there would be no reason for anyone to call police about that vehicle. do not know why attention was drawn to vehicle besides it's a black dodge charger with tinted windows..
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
the letter states that(while following up on another matter)littleton police informed my job that i had recieved a citation in november and that my license was suspended..
Expert:  JD replied 5 years ago.

Courts have been pretty consistent that we have no reasonable expectation of privacy to our license plate numbers. If an officer stops you to run the plate then he must have a reasonable suspicion that you committed an offense before he could detain you. However, without such a seizure and without the officer invading a reasonable expectation of privacy, I can think of nothing that would deem his actions improper in the eyes of the court.

 

Since the officer likely did not see you driving, he/she could not arrest you but he/she could inform your employer of your license status. I also know of no civil action that you can take against the police officer for informing your employer as long as the information given your employer was entirely true. If any of it is false or misleading, you would have a civil claim for defamation against the police officer. You should consult a local attorney if you would like to evaluate your potential civil claim against the police for defamation.

 

I realize it was a lousy thing to do but I think you will find it was legal.

 

Please reply if I can help further.

 

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JD, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 1335
Experience: Over 11 years in practice as a litigator ... civil and criminal
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