What to Do if You Are Stopped.
- Stop your vehicle as far out of the travel lane as possible
- Turn on the interior light
- Keep your hands in view at all times, preferably on the steering wheel
- Wait for the officer to request your license and registration
- Relax and stay in your vehicle
- The officer will explain the reason for the motor vehicle stop
- Do not argue with the officer, if you think that you have been wrongly cited the correct procedure is to request a hearing through the district court.
Why You Were Stopped
Moving violations are the most common reasons for motor vehicle stops. These include but are not limited to:
- Equipment violations i.e. broken headlight, taillight, plate light, and obstructed windshield
- Failure to yield
- Marked lanes violations
- Stop sign violations
- Traffic light violations
Why Did the Officer…
Why officers sneak up on my vehicle
Safety. Officers are trained to minimize the risk of danger to themselves and the operator of the vehicle stopped. Many officers are injured or killed while making traffic stops each year.
Why There were Two or Three Officers at My Stop
Again safety. Officers in the vicinity of a traffic stop will routinely back up their fellow officer to reduce the likelihood of the officer being injured.
Other Helpful Information
All operators are required to have in their possession their driver’s license and registration for the vehicle. It is recommended that your driver’s license be kept somewhere where it is easily accessible. The Webster Police Department strongly urges drivers not to keep their driver’s license underneath the driver’s seat. As this is a popular spot to hide a weapon, an operator that reaches under the seat on a traffic stop will heighten the officer’s awareness and may change the demeanor of the officer until safety is again established.
Driving in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a privilege, not a right. Although an officer can verify the status of your driver’s license if you don’t have it in possession, they are not required to; the burden of proof is on you, the operator. You can still be fined if your license is in good standing if you do not have it in your possession.
It is an Arrestable Offense if you are an out of state operator and do not have your license in your possession while driving in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts regardless if your license in that state is in good standing or not.