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Google Glass ticket binned due to flimsy evidence

In what appears to be an international legal precedent, a US driver has been cleared in court of penalties related to driving whilst under the influence – of Google Glass.

Californian Cecilia Abadie was given a traffic citation for wearing the smart specs by police in October 2013, as well as being slapped with a speeding ticket. The US state's traffic laws prohibit driving "with a monitor visible."

Contending the charge, Ms Abadie argued that intelligent eyewear was not operating at the time, and thus no more capable of distracting her than normal glasses.

Read more: US driver given ticket for driving under influence of Google Glass (opens in new tab)

A San Diego court agreed, dismissing the charges based on lack of evidence, with Court Commissioner John Blair noting there was "no testimony it was operating or in use while Ms Abadie was driving."

The court also dismissed the speeding ticket because there was not enough proof.

Ms Abadie, an app developer, was pleased after the verdict and reiterated that the glasses themselves did not give drivers any "blind spots."

"I believe we have to start experimenting with devices like this. A hands-free device is safer than a cell phone," she told reporters after the verdict.

Whilst a landmark case, the ruling does not mean that driving with Google Glass is now legal in the US. Instead, it remains the responsibility of individual officers to assess whether a citation is necessary.

Google continues to urge Glass wearers to use the device responsibly, saying: "Glass is built to connect you more with the world around you, not distract you from it."

Read more: Driving under the influence of Google Glass to be banned in the UK (opens in new tab)

James Laird
James Laird

James is a freelance editor, journalist, and writer with 10+ years experience in digital media, SEO and news writing. He has produced content on a number of Future sites, including TechRadar, ITProPortal, Tom's Guide, and T3, and was Senior Staff Writer at ITProPortal.