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Can police officers use radar detectors in Virginia?

On Behalf of | Dec 12, 2019 | Traffic Offenses Blog Post |

Virginia police officers use radar guns to identify speeders on the roadways. If the officer properly calibrates his or her radar gun, the equipment is extremely accurate. A radar detector is an in-vehicle instrument that alerts the driver that an officer is nearby with a radar gun. This technology is essentially available to help avoid speeding tickets. What some drivers do not realize is that this technology is not legal in the state. While some states allow radar detectors, Virginia is not one of them.

According to the Virginian Pilot, Virginia is the only state besides the District of Columbia that has not lifted the ban on radar detectors. The ban has been in place since 1962 and while it is not the only state to have had the ban, most repealed their bans. You cannot purchase one of these devices in the state of Virginia. If you do have one, you may suffer an additional fine on top of your ticket if caught. This fine cannot exceed 250 dollars. In addition, you may lose your device to the police officer. It does not matter if you were using the radar detector at the time.

One reason cited for keeping the ban is that law enforcement seizes serious criminals during routine traffic stops. With the use of radars, former officials believe that more criminals may escape. Virginia does not change laws quickly. As radar technology becomes more outdated, the radar ban will remain at the back-burner.

This is simply for informational purposes only. None of the information about radar detectors is legal advice.