When you encounter a police vehicle, your stress level likely rises even if you are not doing anything wrong. This stress may increase even more if the encounter occurs toward the end of the month. Almost everyone has made some quip at some point regarding police officers rushing to “fill their quotas” at the end of every month. This is because, until recently, police in Illinois did have to write a certain amount of tickets or file a certain number of reports in order to stay in the running for promotions, raises, and positive evaluations.
Such quotas often lead to unwarranted traffic stops and tickets, as officers may be tempted to disregard your rights in order to fulfill their quotas. In one town in Illinois in 2013, officers were required to file at least 40 reports per month of “suspicious characters” in order to meet their quotas. This requirement likely led to officers exaggerating circumstances to make a person seem suspicious for the sake of the report when the person may have not been violating any law at all.
Governor Quinn Signs the Quota Ban
A bill proposing a statewide ban on police quotas passed both the Illinois House of Representatives and Senate, and Governor Pat Quinn signed the bill into law in June of 2014. After the signing, Illinois residents hopefully will find some relief knowing that police departments are now banned by law from implementing quotas or using quotas as a way to measure an officer’s qualifications. The law further bans police departments from using citation records as a way to compare officers when making employment decisions.
Though the new law should give Illinois residents hope, it does not necessarily mean that ticket quotas will actually disappear. Though quotas have been banned in the state of California, police departments in Los Angeles have faced many accusations of still having “secret quotas.” In fact, a group of police officers has won a multi-million dollar settlement in a lawsuit in which they accused superior officers of continuing to implement unlawful ticket quotas.
Hopefully, Chicago police will learn a lesson from the Los Angeles police departments and not try to circumvent the new law by imposing quotas under the table. If authorities learn that ticket quotas continue to exist, it may have a positive effect for people who received tickets that may be associated with unlawful quotas. It is always important to contact an attorney who will look into every detail of your case to see if any police misconduct occurred.
Contact a Chicago Criminal Defense Lawyer for a Free Consultation
If you have received a traffic citation or any other type of ticket or criminal summons, the conduct of police officers during the traffic stop or arrest is highly important to the defense of your case. Experienced Chicago criminal defense attorney Steven Goldman knows how to examine police conduct to identify any possible violations of your rights. Such violations can help keep out evidence and even have your case dismissed completely. Do not hesitate to contact Goldman & Associates today for assistance.