Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Take-Down Lights Definition:

Bright police cruise lights directed at a person while shadowing the cruiser occupants.

In Rohrich, Justice Selkirk wrote:

"At 2:23 a.m. Cpl Jolliffe observed a vehicle approximately 300 meters behind their location pull off to the side of the road and shut its lights off. Moments later the lights were turned back on, the vehicle did a U-turn and drove away, back in the direction it had come from.

"Upon seeing this Cpl Jolliffe and Cpl Frows followed it for a distance of one to one and half kilometres. The speed of the vehicle was not determined. There was no indication of bad driving in the sense of it being erratic, or in violation of any Highway Traffic Act rules. It pulled down an alley behind a building and stopped. Cpl Jolliffe was immediately behind it. He had used his lights and siren over the one and one half kilometres and there is no doubt that the accused would have known of the police presence when he stopped. By this point, as I say, Cpl Jolliffe was directly behind him and testified that he did not lose sight of the vehicle at any time.

"The accused got out of his vehicle. Cpl Jolliffe told him to stay there. Later in his evidence, he said he told the accused to get back into his vehicle. Cpl Jolliffe had turned his take-down lights on the accused.

"Take down lights are extremely bright lights intended to blind a person looking at the cruiser. They are used so that the police can see the individual in question but the individual cannot see the police due to the intensity of the light. This is for officer safety.

"As Cpl Jolliffe turned on these lights he saw the accused turn and place his hand on his vehicle which suggested to the officer that he was using the vehicle for a support.

"Upon approaching the accused, Cpl Jolliffe noted an obvious odour of alcohol on the accused’s breath. It was not described as strong. He also noted that the accused’s eyes were glossy, although in his notes made later he described the eyes as bloodshot. I took from his evidence that in his mind there is no real distinction between glossy and bloodshot."


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