Friday, June 4, 2004

New 'certificate' may not be sufficient for legal driving; separate law requires valid ID

"[P]olice have the right to ask anyone for a valid identification - and can take people into custody for not producing one. So the new law is causing confusion among Tennessee police officers. Some agencies plan to enforce the 'no ID' law; others - including Davidson County - won't."

"Metro Police Chief Ronal Serpas has decided that his officers will accept the certificate as ID unless there's evidence that it either is counterfeited or obtained fraudulently, said spokesman Don Aaron."

"State troopers, on the other hand, won't. Several police and sheriff's departments contacted yesterday hadn't decided."

"To get the driving certificate, immigrants must have both photo identification that proves their identity, such as a foreign consulate ID or temporary visa paperwork, and documents that prove their Tennessee residency, such as an electric bill."

"There's no law specifying which documents are acceptable ID to police. It's often up to individual officers to decide whether they'll accept foreign documents, such as another country's passport, police officials said yesterday."

The Tennessean

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