ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEE:
CAROLYN W. RADER STEVE CARTER
Attorney General of Indiana
SCOTT A. KREIDER
Deputy Attorney General
COURT OF APPEALS OF INDIANA
DONALD HATCHER, )
vs. ) No. 49A02-0107-CR-496
STATE OF INDIANA, )
APPEAL FROM THE MARION SUPERIOR COURT
The Honorable Curtis Foulks, Judge
Cause No. 49F13-0011-IF-205791
February 4, 2002
OPINION - FOR PUBLICATION
Donald Hatcher appeals the judgments against him for the infractions
of Speeding and Unsafe Lane Movement. In contesting these judgments,
Hatcher contends that the issuing officer did not have the authority to
issue him the traffic citations because she was neither wearing a
distinctive uniform and badge of authority nor in a marked police vehicle
as required by Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2. Because uniformed officers were
present when the non-uniformed officer issued the citations to Hatcher, we
find that Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2 does not apply and affirm both judgments.
Facts and Procedural History
The facts relevant to this appeal are as follows. On September 16,
2000, Hatcher was traveling southbound on Interstate 65 in a semi tractor-
trailer truck. At the same time, Indiana State Police Sergeant Karol Ruby
was also traveling southbound in her unmarked State Police issued vehicle.
Sergeant Ruby was off-duty at the time; therefore, she was not in uniform.
At or around the 111-mile marker, Hatcher passed Sergeant Ruby on the
right. Due to the fact that Hatcher appeared to be speeding, Sergeant Ruby
used her in-car radar to note the speed at which Hatcher was traveling.
The radar indicated that Hatcher was indeed exceeding the posted speed
limit. Shortly thereafter, Sergeant Ruby observed Hatcher make an illegal
lane change. Sergeant Ruby radioed to have marked police units sent to the
area. Sergeant Ruby continued to follow Hatcher as he exited from the
Hatcher exited at Whiteland Road and pulled into a truck stop to
refuel. As Hatcher was inside paying for his gas, Ruby and two uniformed
Whiteland police officers approached him. Ruby identified herself with her
police identification card and then issued Hatcher citations for the
following infractions: (1) speeding at 76.9 m.p.h. in a 40 m.p.h. zone; (2)
unsafe lane movement; and (3) a tire violation (tread missing).
Hatcher appeared in court to contest the citations. He argued that
because he was not under arrest, Ruby lacked authority to issue him the
citations because she failed to meet the requirements imposed by Indiana
Code § 9-30-2-2. At the close of evidence, the judge found for the State
on both the speeding and the unsafe lane movement issue. Thereafter,
Hatcher filed a motion to correct errors in which he alleged that the trial
court’s findings were not supported by the evidence and were insufficient
as a matter of law. The trial court denied his motion to correct errors.
This appeal ensued.
Discussion and Decision
Hatcher contends that because Sergeant Ruby was not in uniform or in
a marked police vehicle at the time she issued him citations for the
infractions of speeding and unsafe lane movement and because he was not
under arrest at the time the citations were issued, the evidence is
insufficient to support these judgments against him. Hatcher directs our
attention to Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2, which provides:
A law enforcement officer may not arrest or issue a traffic
information and summons to a person for a violation of an Indiana law
regulating the use and operation of a motor vehicle on an Indiana
highway or an ordinance of a city or town regulating the use and
operation of a motor vehicle on an Indiana highway unless at the time
of the arrest the officer is:
1) wearing a distinctive uniform and a badge of authority; or
2) operating a motor vehicle that is clearly marked as a
that will clearly show the officer or the officer’s vehicle to casual
observations to be an officer or a police vehicle. This section does
not apply to an officer making an arrest when there is a uniformed
officer present at the time of the arrest.
(emphasis added). Based on this statutory language, Hatcher asserts that
the officer issuing his traffic citations lacked the authority to do so.
In particular, Hatcher’s primary defense in contesting the issuance of the
traffic citations was that he was not under “arrest;” and therefore,
Sergeant Ruby did not have the authority to issue him the citations because
she was neither wearing a distinctive uniform and badge of authority nor
operating a motor vehicle that was clearly marked as a police vehicle.
Hatcher’s argument appears to recognize that an officer need not be
uniformed or in a marked police vehicle as set forth in Indiana Code § 9-30-
2-2 if the officer is accompanied by other officers who are uniformed.
However, he insists that this exception to the application of Indiana Code
§ 9-30-2-2 applies only if he were under arrest. We disagree.
At the outset we note that Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2 was created for
public policy reasons. Miller v. State, 641 N.E.2d 64 (Ind. Ct. App.
1994), trans. denied. Specifically, we recognize that:
[T]he obvious intent of the legislature, in enacting I.C. 9-30-2-2,
[was] to ensure that the law enforcement officers who enforce our
traffic laws are either wearing a uniform and badge or driving a
marked car when they effect an arrest or issue a traffic citation.
Such requirements are good public policy in that they help to
distinguish law enforcement officers from those individuals on our
highways who, for illicit purposes, impersonate law enforcement
Id. at 69.
When construing the language of a statute, we do not presume that the
legislature intended language used in the statute to be applied illogically
or to bring about an unjust or absurd result. Riley v. State, 711 N.E.2d
489, 495 (Ind. 1999). While we acknowledge that the legislature dropped
the clause “or issue a traffic information and summons” after its first use
in Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2, we believe that every subsequent use of the
word “arrest” was intended to incorporate the situation in which a traffic
information and summons is issued without an accompanying arrest.
To read the statute otherwise, produces an absurd result. Namely, the
requirements of this statute would apply only when an arrest is being
effectuated and not when a traffic information and summons are being issued
without an accompanying arrest. This interpretation would render the
legislature’s inclusion of the clause “or issue a traffic information and
summons” in the first part of this statutory section meaningless, which is
contrary to the basic tenet of statutory interpretation that we will strive
to avoid an interpretation that renders any part of the statute meaningless
or superfluous. Wray v. State, 751 N.E.2d 679, 683 (Ind. Ct. App. 2001).
Moreover, this interpretation satisfies the public policy concerns that
Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2 was enacted to address.
Because two uniformed officers accompanied Sergeant Ruby when she
issued the traffic citations to Hatcher, Sergeant Ruby was not precluded
from issuing the citations by the uniform and marked vehicle requirements
of Indiana Code § 9-30-2-2.
FRIEDLANDER, J., and BARNES, J., concur.
 Ind. Code § 9-21-5-2.
 Ind. Code § 9-21-8-24.
 Although not explicitly stated therein, our review of the record
suggests that the third citation was dismissed.