McDermott On Demand: If Only…. Supreme Court of the United States, October Term, 2015
By Thomas J. McDermott, Jr.
Thomas J. McDermott, Jr.
This is an appeal from a decision of the California Fifth District Court of Appeal (CA Sup. Ct. denied review) sustaining a decision of the Kern County Superior Court regarding a so-called "speeding ticket" issued to Thomas J. McDermott. The essence of the case is that Mr. Mc -Dermott was cited by a California Highway Patrol officer for driving at an alleged speed of 84 miles per hour in a zone specified to provide for a 65 mile per hour speed limit. There is no issue of public safety since the facts are clear that the highway was bereft of automobiles at the time of the incident, that the highway runs through 50 miles of sand in the world’s second largest desert and that there were no businesses or pedestrians within miles of the alleged "speeding." We assume jurisdiction as part of our ongoing efforts to clarify the law of the United States.
We have taken this case because of the conflict among the states, indeed among the counties and cities within the states, of so-called "speeding" laws. For example, the speed "limits" on the highway in the case before us have been respectively 35 miles per hour, 40 miles per hour, 50 miles per hour, 60 miles per hour, 65 miles per hour, 70 miles per hour, and unlimited, depending on the year. The limits are changed sporadically under California laws which allows counties and cities to set local "speed limits" and it is those laws which we address.