Your Hump Day Recess — Comics Can Teach You DUI Law

Most of us admit we don’t know the law as well as we should. We’re not aware enough of our rights, what really constitutes probably cause, and what is and is not advisable to say when stopped by a Illustrated Guide to Lawpolice officer. Anyone who has ever looked up a particular law to get the story will find that the language is well, let’s say, dry.

Enter Nathaniel Burney, a lawyer and comic artist who maintains The Illustrated Guide to Law, a blog about law in webcomic form. Burney has been both a criminal defense lawyer and a prosecutor – he worked in the Manhattan D.A.’s office – so he knows his stuff. He’s also a real comic fan, and it shows in his very informative and engaging work.

The purpose of the Illustrated Guide to Law is not to impart a genuine legal education. As Burney writes, “I’m not trying to get you through law school. I’m trying to get the basic points across. Case names and citations don’t help, they only get in the way.”

comic2 So, if you want to know when a police officer can stop your car at a DUI checkpoint? You can check out the California Vehicle Code, or get the story from the much livelier webcomic form.

The guide offers lessons on a pretty wide variety of legal topics, including entrapment, deterrence, wiretaps, and for the those who are doubly confused by Latin terms, mens rea and actus reus. The law comic is also available in book form.

Your Hump Day Recess: Every Wednesday LifeSafer brings you something a little different, related to the worlds of road safety, to ease your progress over Hump Day and through the week.

Previous Hump Days: car safety, animals,  posterstraffic jams and more posters.