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Did police have reasonable suspicion to initiate a DUI stop?

When you saw those flashing lights in your rearview mirror, you probably had a bit of a panic attack just like most people would. You pulled over and prepared to ask the officer what you did wrong, but first, you put some gum in your mouth and wondered if the officer would notice that you had a couple of drinks with dinner.

Law enforcement officers can only stop your vehicle if reasonable suspicion exists that you committed a crime or are committing a crime. But what does that mean?

Police officers should attempt to de-escalate a situation

It seems that, all too often, police officers rush to take aggressive action to resolve a situation. They see everything as a conflict. They may even escalate tensions as they try to get people to comply.

This is the wrong approach, some experts claim, saying that officers should focus instead on de-escalation. They should try to defuse a dangerous and potentially violent situation. They should see what they can do to make it less likely that they need to use force.

After man's suicide, woman charged with manslaughter

A man from New Jersey passed away by suicide on the very day he was supposed to be graduating from Boston College. Now his girlfriend has been accused of manslaughter and linked to the death.

According to reports, the young woman was allegedly very controlling, and she was "physically, verbally and psychologically abusive" to the young man. The two of them dated for about a year and a half. Over the last few months, the relationship appeared to fall apart.

You do not have to do blatantly dangerous work

Hopefully, you will never be put into a position at work where you are asked to do something you think is incredibly dangerous. If you are, though, do you have to do it? Your boss is in charge, so you probably feel a lot of pressure to just swallow your fears and get the work done.

Here's the reality: You do not have to subject yourself to that type of danger. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) notes that you can refuse the job if:

  • You asked your employer to make the job safer by eliminating the risk, and they could not or would not do so.
  • You recognized a clear, imminent danger and you refused the job "in good faith."
  • The danger is so obvious that you're not the only one claiming there is a risk. A reasonable third party would back up your claims. For instance, if an OSHA inspector examined the site, they would quickly spot and agree with the danger.
  • You can't ask for an inspection from OSHA because you do not have time to do so.

9 hurt in multicar crash in New Jersey

Nine people recently suffered injuries in a multicar pileup in New Jersey, with six of them heading to the hospital for treatment.

According to reports, the accident happened on Friday, Sept. 27. It took place in the evening, right around 8:30 p.m. That information comes from the Paterson Public Safety Director. Police reported that the crash was close to the intersection between Lawrence Street and Rosa Parks Blvd.

Factors that contribute to how police officers react

When police officers react to a situation, it happens in a split second. They make quick decisions that can have a lasting impact. For instance, if the police react too aggressively, the situation could escalate to one of stark police brutality. When considering the engagement after the fact, even the officer may agree that it was not the right course of action.

So, what factors influence the way that they react to any given encounter with a suspect? For better or worse, some of the key factors are:

  • What type of offense they believe the suspect committed
  • The race, gender, age and social class of the suspect
  • The suspect's demeanor and the way that they act during the meeting
  • The relationship between any potential victims and the suspect
  • How many police officers respond to the call and arrive at the scene
  • The actions and attitudes of those other officers
  • Whether or not the encounter is visible to the public
  • What type of evidence the officers have at the scene
  • The type of neighborhood the officers are in at the time of the engagement

When does a bad job cross the line to a hostile environment?

You are not alone if you have days when the last thing you want to do is go to work. Maybe your boss has been on a tirade lately, or the new person they hired to work with you is an intolerable complainer. Perhaps you are years overdue for a raise, and you can't afford to take a vacation on your salary.

While any of these and more can create a difficult work environment, think carefully before describing your New Jersey workplace as hostile. The term "hostile work environment" has legal factors that may not exist in your job. On the other hand, it is important to recognize the elements that can create a work environment that is hostile.

What percentage of drivers are arrested on DUI or DWI charges?

You know people who routinely drive home after having too much to drink. You also know about DUI/DWI accident statistics. It's clear that people often get behind the wheel when they are impaired by drugs or alcohol. In some cases, they don't even know that they're impaired, or they honestly believe that they are safe to drive.

What you wonder is just how many people do this. How common is it? What are the odds that you could eventually find yourself facing charges?

Common excuses for running stop signs

Running a stop sign is one of the fastest and easiest ways to cause a car accident, and yet you still see it happen far too often. Remember that most car accidents happen because of driver errors. These types of critical mistakes put people in the hospital.

Why do they happen? A few excuses people tend to give, per the American Safety Council, include the following:

  • Drivers get dared to do it by friends or see it as a sort of challenge. This is especially common with teen drivers.
  • People get distracted, perhaps by their phones, and they simply do not see the sign until they go through it.
  • People swear that they did not see any other cars at the intersection, so they decided that they did not really need to stop.
  • Drivers are in a hurry, so they accidentally or intentionally run the sign to speed up their commute.
  • Drivers decide that slowing down is close enough to stopping, so they do that without ever actually stopping the car, even though they know full well that the sign is there.

Study finds that police behavior influences other officers

Wondering how likely a police officer is to use excessive force? One way to find out is just to look at the other officers that he or she works with.

According to a new study, which focused on officers in Chicago but could apply all over the United States, the behavior of one officer drastically influences the behavior of others. According to researchers, officers who work with other officers who have a history of misconduct accusations are then "more likely to emulate that behavior."

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