The person who hit me was texting. How can I prove it?

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Makers of a new device claim that they can prove if someone was texting while driving. When connected to a phone the device known as a textalyzer can unlock key data such as the exact time a text was sent, a phone call was placed or an app was opened.

But even if it works as its makers claim, the device may still pose a few legal issues. Is the device an invasion of privacy? Would the data derived be admissible in court?

Until such questions are addressed prosecutors will continue to employ traditional methods to challenge distracted drivers in court.

But can you really prove that someone was distracted behind the wheel?

Making a case against a distracted driver

Last year the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a report that analyzed how prosecutors litigate distracted driving cases. Trial evidence such as screenshots and photos are undeniably incriminating, but they aren’t the only ways for prosecutors to build a strong case.

According to the report, one of the most effective methods used to convict a distracted driver is through witness testimony. Here are some of the types of witnesses that prosecutors can call to convict a distracted driver.

Eyewitness accounts

If the plaintiff is willing and able to, they can take the stand and testify against the defendant.

Similarly, if there are civilian witnesses, the prosecution may call on them to speak. Civilian witnesses can testify to their observations on the scene and the behavior of both drivers.

On-scene officers can also tell the court about any statements that the defendant made or any unusual behavior they observed.

Expert witnesses

Prosecutors can call a records custodian on behalf of the cell phone provider. The custodian can help the court in analyzing data retrieved from the cell phone and explain the technology behind it.

This testimony, when used in conjunction with that of other expert witnesses, can determine if the phone was in use at the time of the crash.

Texting and driving cases are not always easy to prove but are by no means are impossible. Just because there were not any witnesses on the scene or a video of the accident does not mean that you will not have a strong case.

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