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Ignorance of law no excuse for violations

Recently, a couple of legal questions and concerns have come forward.

A resident inquired about cars being parked and running. Nevada Revised Statue 484B.530 addresses this point. Simply stated, it requires a driver will not leave an unattended vehicle with the engine running. (Commercial vehicles are exempt or when loading and unloading.)

A resident had a concern regarding animals and pets being left inside vehicles and the vehicle running. Boulder City Ordinance 7.3.9F addresses this concern. If an animal is left in a car and it endangers the animal’s well-being, it could be very costly.

Another significant concern came forward regarding the open carry of firearms. There are several restrictions in Nevada regarding the open carry of firearms throughout the state. NRS section 202 outlines these restrictions. Boulder City Ordinance 7.1.3 also provides guidance regarding firearms.

Guidance is offered in many forms. The letter of the law can be exact. The spirit of the law may be a bit forgiving. But ignorance of the law is no excuse. A way to think about it is, if you think there is a law against it, you’re probably right. Being reasonable can be a wonderful base to start with.

Let’s get going! “Control, 269, We’ll be 10-8 in-service.” Hope it’s not busy.

Aug. 3. A driver fails to use a turn signal. The patrol officer spots the violation and the blue and red lights come on. The driver states (s)he was in a hurry to get home to use the bathroom; that’s the reason for forgetting to use the turn signal. The driver will be able to use the bathroom in the jail cell now, since failing the field sobriety test. Something as simple as not to drink and drive — just as simple as a turn signal.

Aug. 4. An officer responds to a traffic stop on U.S. Highway 93 coming into town from Henderson and sees another vehicle flying. The patrol vehicle’s rear radar clocks the car at 96 mph. The patrol officer begins to pursue but ends the pursuit once the vehicle speeds off at more than 100 mph toward Arizona. Three hours later, Arizona Public Safety Department calls and reports the same SUV is fully engulfed in flames. We learn the SUV was stolen and used in an armed robbery in Las Vegas.

Aug. 5. An officer sees a Razor all-terrain vehicle driving on Yucca Street. The officer attempts to stop it but the driver heads up to Bootleg Canyon. The driver of the Razor didn’t realize there is some construction going on and crashes. No one was hurt but someone got a fistful of tickets.

Aug. 6. Another car stops for a simple violation. The driver is greeted with the customary request: “License, registration, proof of insurance, please.” After providing the required documentation, a records check reveals the wanted driver has a suspended driver’s license. So, the driver is arrested for the warrant and cited for driving on a suspended license. It’s not a good night to be out on a date.

Aug. 7. Who likes fishing? It’s best to head out in the early morning during the summer. So, the father and son are at the fishing pond at Veterans’ Memorial Park. The officer sees a vehicle parked near the pond and it is 4 a.m. The officer learns the vehicle registration is suspended, so he takes a walk to the fish pond and makes contact with the registered owner and his son. The dad denies driving there. One more thing; he didn’t have a fishing license either. A couple of citations later he realized it’s never smart to lie to an officer, especially with your kid is around.

Aug. 8. What a glorious day. Not a criminal hotbed today. The usual traffic violators and calls for service kept us busy. It’s days like today that give us time to get out and meet the community.

Aug. 9. We like to thank all of our great residents. While speaking with a local, a question was asked about an issue that is consuming every town: the illegal taking of prescription pills. This issue is sweeping across America. Education and responsibly talking with your kids about legal and illegal drugs is a start. We need to take a reasonable approach to drug education by discussing it in our community.

Before we go, I’d like to congratulate Boulder City Fire Department for its win at this year’s National Night Out softball game. It was great seeing you out there. It was wonderful that a ball field was dedicated to our brother, Dan Leach. Hope everyone had a great time.

Officer Jeffrey Grasso is an 11-year veteran of the Boulder City Police Department. He previously served as a police officer in south Florida for four years.

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