When you look in your state’s statutes, there will be certain terms (limitations) that are used all over the place. Start with their rules for statutory construction– these are over-arching definitions and principles that apply to ALL the following chapters.
You have to take your time and look VERY closely at what is actually being said. Do not make any assumptions. Do not fill in any blanks for legislators. Any blanks are there because they HAVE to be. If something is left out, it is probably because putting it in would harm your rights.
Specifically note below the terms “Person and Property”.
I looked these up in the NC General Statutes because a vehicle is ONLY used to transport “Persons and Property”. The whole definition of “Motor Vehicle” and “driver” hinges on this. I knew there was a chink in the armor somewhere, as the federal definition of “Motor Vehicle” is:
“18 U.S. Code Part I – CRIMES
18 U.S. Code § 31 – Definitions
(6) Motor vehicle.— The term “motor vehicle” means every description of carriage or other contrivance propelled or drawn by mechanical power and used for commercial purposes on the highways in the transportation of passengers, passengers and property, or property or cargo.”
Thus, any “crime” you are accused of in relation to a “Motor vehicle” denotes commercial activity. States are limited by these Federal statutes, as they are nothing more than extensions of the Federal government. I am not talking about the original 50 Union states.
(49) Vehicle. – Every device in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, excepting devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon fixed rails or tracks; provided, that for the purposes of this Chapter bicycles shall be deemed vehicles and every rider of a bicycle upon a highway shall be subject to the provisions of this Chapter applicable to the driver of a vehicle except those which by their nature can have no application. This term shall not include a device which is designed for and intended to be used as a means of transportation for a person with a mobility impairment, or who uses the device for mobility enhancement, is suitable for use both inside and outside a building, including on sidewalks, and is limited by design to 15 miles per hour when the device is being operated by a person with a mobility impairment, or who uses the device for mobility enhancement. This term shall not include an electric personal assistive mobility device as defined in G.S. 20-4.01(7a).”
Did you notice the mention of “commercial use?” It’s not stated explicitly, but…
“Chapter 12: Statutory Construction.
§ 12-3. Rules for construction of statutes.
In the construction of all statutes the following rules shall be observed, unless such construction would be inconsistent with the manifest intent of the General Assembly, or repugnant to the context of the same statute, that is to say:
(6) “Person” and “Property”. – The word “person” shall extend and be applied to bodies politic and corporate, as well as to individuals, unless the context clearly shows to the contrary. The words “real property” shall be coextensive with lands, tenements and hereditaments. The words “personal property” shall include moneys, goods, chattels, choses in action and evidences of debt, including all things capable of ownership, not descendable to heirs at law. The word “property” shall include all property, both real and personal.
(11) “State” and “United States”. – The word “state,” when applied to the different parts of the United States, shall be construed to extend to and include the District of Columbia and the several territories, so called; and the words “United States” shall be construed to include the said district and territories and all dependencies.”
“Heirs at law,” as the term is used in wrongful death statute, means lineal descendants. Howlett v. Greenberg, 34 Colo.App. 356, 530 P.2d 1285, 1287.
A deceased person’s “heirs at law” are those who succeed to his estate of inheritance under statutes of descent and distribution, in absence of testamentary disposition, and not necessarily his heirs at common law, who are persons succeeding to deceased’s realty in case of his intestacy. In re Towndrow’s Will, 47 N.M. 173, 138 P.2d 1001, 1003.”