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Police pull you over for no license plate light but give you no ticket but give you a driving without license ticket can they do

I got pulled over for no license plate light but did not receive a ticket for the no light so since police seen I had no license they only gave me a no driver license ticket instead for no light ticket. Can the police do that? Then police let me drive off as well

 1 attorney answer ,   Jay K. Nixon    Avvo Rating: 10     Criminal Defense Attorney in Kenosha & Janesville, WI

Yes, officers can charge you with things other than what first caught their attention, such as the minor equipment violation you describe.  License plate bulbs are, generally speaking, a bit of a “reach,” since they are so often ignored as so minor as to not be worth the trouble.  I suppose if you complained enough about not being charged with that, they would be happy to accommodate and charge you, but I’m not sure why you’d want to do that, since the added throwaway charge would have no impact on your more serious charge.   Either way, the law is pretty clear that when you are driving on a public roadway, they can stop you with reasonable suspicion of anything, and let the investigation go in any other direction where it takes them, so the key to avoiding this is not to drive on public roadways.  All that being said, however, a motion to dismiss due to lack of a truly “reasonable” suspicion might still be in order, so let your lawyer read all the reports and take a look at that option for you.