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Warning To The Wise About Your Car’s ‘Black Box’

Warning To The Wise About Your Car’s ‘Black Box’

If you are charged with criminal activity, the police now have another source of information to use against you, the information stored in your car’s ‘black box.’ The Senate voted to approve NJ A3579, a bill introduced by the NJ Assembly on September 11, 2013 pertaining to the use of information from automobile ‘black box’ recording devices. The information recorded and stored by the ‘black box’ includes location, time of use, number of occupants inside the vehicle, direction of travel and speed. In addition to providing evidence in the case of a motor vehicle accident, the information is also accessible for law enforcement purposes. The text of the NJ A3579 includes the following: “2. a. Except as provided in subsection c. of this section, no person, except the owner of the motor vehicle that contains the recording device, or the owner’s representative, may retrieve, obtain, or use data recorded, stored, or transmitted from the recording device, unless: (1) The owner of the motor vehicle, or the owner’s representative, consents in writing at the time the data is retrieved, obtained, or used; (2) The recorded data is retrieved or obtained by a law enforcement officer pursuant to a search warrant issued by a judge of the Superior Court or upon order by a court of competent jurisdiction or another administrative authority having jurisdiction to issue such an order;” Although the bill, recently approved by the NJ Senate, limits the use of the stored data, it did not preclude its use by law enforcement. This means that if the police believe that a motor vehicle was utilized in the commission of a crime they may be able to obtain the information from the vehicle’s ‘black box’ that would assist in the investigation and prosecution of any suspects. For more information about specific crimes or criminal defense in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com. This blog is for informational purposes only and not intended to replace the advice of an attorney.

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