The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 20 of 47 Posts

·
shay2nak
Joined
·
24,978 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
i got a speeding ticket today driving home from work. I was wondering if any of you have gotten them and were able to fight the charges and get a dismissal.

I was driving alone on a one lane highway. It was overcast and cool. I was the only car in the lane. The patrol car was coming towards me, he had several cars behind him and in front of him, including a large van. I didn't see the cop because of the van. He didn't pull me over right away, i guess he had to stop and turn his car around.

He told me that he had me at 75 in a 55 using a laser. He showed it to me (cool setup) a laser in the front (left of the dash and one at the rear) his display is right over the tach/speedo and has some buttons on it. It read 75. He also told me that he gives tickets for people doing 75 and above, so if I were going 74 he would have "not bothered or wasted my time." I told him I was just relaxing and driving, I was being safe even though my lane was clear and that I didn't think that I was going that fast even though I was going above 55. He gave me the ticket and we parted.

Now, I have to fight this because A) i don't want to pay the fine of $400 B) I can't take traffic school because of the 18 month rule. I absolutely cannot let this go on my record. It will kill me. My parents will whoop my ass and I doubt that I will be able to afford the Elise because of insurance increase.

Because it is a laser, it is subject to error & calibration issues. The error is associated with electronics, obsticals, weather, and operator. Calibration is because over time things wear down, a watch has to be wound, a weight scale has to be reset, etc. They need to be calibrated over certain periods and be certified. I'm not sure how it operates and I'm not sure how he was alerted to my speed. Even an error of 1% would be enough to lower my speed from 75 People always say that you have to be lucky that the cop doesn't show up in court, but how would i find out when his vacation or day off is?

please help!!

I don't even know if i should bring up his statement of 75 or above. If I do then I would be admitting guilt right? All I'm trying to do is prove that I was going below 75 like the cop said. Or should i try to aim at 55?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,985 Posts
Might be time to lawyer up. I have a friend here (no, really, it's not me) that manages to get several tickets a year. There are a few attorneys here in Seattle who do nothing but speeding ticket type stuff. The woman he works with has a 99% 'win' rate depending on your definition of win.

1) He hasn't gotten any points, so his insurance hasn't gone up
2) Only occasionally does he have to pay a fine, and that's usually greatly reduced from the original ticket
3) He does have to pay a few hundred bucks for the lawyer, but he says he comes out way ahead factoring in the insurance rates.
4) He doesn't have to take a day off work for court. She does it all.

I would guess that there's someone like this in your area. Then you have to decide which way hurts the least financially.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,577 Posts
I got a ticket a few months ago (my first in years). It was in town and he said that I was moving at a pretty good clip. I'm known to speed a lot, but I don't think that I was doing what he said I was. Anyway, I contested the ticket and went to court. While waiting to appear the officer that wrote the ticket walked up to me (in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt) and said that he was willing to knock it down to improper start (no points but a slightly bigger fine). He told me that it was entirely up to me. I took the deal, went upstairs and handed over my Visa.
Is all you're trying to save the points? If so, I think that's pretty likely. If you don't want it to cost anything I think you're out of luck... I didn't get a lawyer because I had a clean record going into it and I could afford to take the 'L.' If it were crucial to avoid the points I'd have probably talked to a lawyer.
 

·
shay2nak
Joined
·
24,978 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
that's another thing i had a ticket at the end of this february and I paid the fine & took a class. I had no points but the court has a record that i got a speeding ticket 3.5 months earlier. I did research and found some good stuff concerning questioning and types of defense. I don't want to pay a fine and I don't want to have any points. But having no points is by far the most important to me. I heard that I may be able to take another traffic course, except that this one will be 12 hours and not 8 hours.

You question the cop on his name,
the date & place of citation,
then i wanted to establish the fact that HIS speeding limit is 75 and not the posted 55. And since he is a representative of the court/county he does have the discretion to give you a ticket and under any criteria he may have. So i would ask him "what is your criteria in issuing a speeding ticket?" If he says 55, then I'll specify the location until he says 75 (he told me freeway's limit is 82). Then I can base my whole case on getting the speed below 75, his criteria for issuing a speeding ticket. If I provide any sort of doubt that the speed could be lower I will win right? Because technically i wasn't speeding if i was going 74 because then he would have never given me a ticket.

Radar or laser they have the same errors and calibrations. In fact the errors associated with radar are greater than laser. That is not to say that laser is entirely bulletproof.
 

·
shay2nak
Joined
·
24,978 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
cranium said:
There's no way it was a laser gun. For laser the cop has to be stationary:


http://k40.com/Technical/howlaserworks.html
really, maybe i heard him wrong. The device that emitted the signal was maybe 2/ 2.5 inches in diameter. The lens was that large also. I would expect the laser to be much narrower in diameter. If it's radar it's better for me because of the wider dispersion over distance.

If i ask another CHP patroller, maybe he will tell me and I'm sure that they all use the same device. Maybe I can get the manufacturer?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,195 Posts
I recently fought an 'infraction' through Trial By Declaration (the recommended ticketassassin process) and got exactly squat for my efforts. "Guilty". Full fine. No traffic school. Pay Now.

This was my first ticket in five years. I never even get to see the cop's letter, so who knows..

The whole system is a scam -- the courts and cops both have their hand in the cookie jar; there is no trial by peers, and there's no motivation for them to let you out of a fine and decrease their own revenue. The days of "dismissed" are over. You will pay your tax like everyone else.

My dad got a ticket for going 56 in a 55. That's not an exageration. It's written just like that, and framed. He fought it in Santee court, and the judge made it stick. Pay up. The next year the entire Santee Sherriff dept was driving all new squad cars and the courthouse is moving into new digs. You figure it out.
 

·
shay2nak
Joined
·
24,978 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
damn, sorry to hear it Ground Loop. You have also scared the hell out of me! I don't have a choice this time. I must go in front of a judge, because technically i can't take driving school anymore unless I speak to the judge. So, if I do that might as well fight the ticket. Even the cop who ticketed me said that if I lose i can still take traffic school. Maybe it depends on the county? Boy, do I really dislike Ventura county now...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
724 Posts
i always ask for probation. you pay the ticket but dont lose points they have always let me do it. the stipulation around arkansas is that is ok as long as you dont already have a ticket on file in that particular county. the down side is if you get stoped again within 6 months you end up with 2 tickets
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,154 Posts
Depends a lot on the judge. Best bet is to go to court and hope that the cop doesn't show.

You may get the fine reduced by arguing that you weren't going 75, but I don't think that will show that you weren't speeding. If the judge thinks that the cop was sloppy, he might let you go. But since you obviously were speeding, the judge might decide that you deserve a ticket.

Let us know what happens.
 

·
insert clever title here
Joined
·
7,702 Posts
shay2nak said:
Then I can base my whole case on getting the speed below 75, his criteria for issuing a speeding ticket. If I provide any sort of doubt that the speed could be lower I will win right? Because technically i wasn't speeding if i was going 74 because then he would have never given me a ticket.
Sorry, but if you were speeding, you were speeding. The best way to win is if the cop doesn't show up. The next best way to win is to finding some weakness in the cop's procedures or knowledge to attack his/her credibility. If all else fails, break down into a fit of wailing and crying, get on your knees, and beg for the court's mercy. ;)
 

·
insert clever title here
Joined
·
7,702 Posts
Ground Loop said:
I recently fought an 'infraction' through Trial By Declaration (the recommended ticketassassin process) and got exactly squat for my efforts. "Guilty". Full fine. No traffic school. Pay Now.

This was my first ticket in five years. I never even get to see the cop's letter, so who knows..
It's for that very reason that, I've been told, if you lose a trial by written declaration (in CA), you can then either appeal it or request a trial in person (I forget which). The idea being to deal with exactly what you mention - you never had the chance to review the cop's letter, and the law gives you the right to cross-examine the witnesses (the cop, in this case).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,167 Posts
This is a gamble but has worked for me.

-Request Trial by Jury
-Wait for a year
-Petition for dismissal on the grounds of failure for expediant trial


This is assuming your local court system is clogged. Worked for me.

If it does go to trial, it's usually dismissed anyway since the cop doesn't show.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,253 Posts
Hey Shay
Sorry to hear about your ticket... That f#cking sucks.
Here's a couple of questions you need to honestly ask yourself:

- Were you speeding? (Yes)
- Was the cop doing his job by pulling you over? (Yes)

If it was me I would pay the ticket, go to traffic school, and move on to speed another day. Your only chance is if the cop doesn't show up at court IMO. Same $hit just another day man, we've all done it. Keep your head up.

Neil
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,563 Posts
shay2nak said:
I was driving alone on a one lane highway. It was overcast and cool. I was the only car in the lane. The patrol car was coming towards me, he had several cars behind him and in front of him, including a large van. I didn't see the cop because of the van. He didn't pull me over right away, i guess he had to stop and turn his car around.
There are two different types of speed limits - california is one of the few states with both. One type is an "absolute" speed limit of which one mph over = against the law. The other is a ... forgot the word for it... but conditions warrant the speed - even over the posted limit. Highways and major roads in CA are absolute. The rest are the other kind. See what qualifies & you might be able to argue that point.

I read all of this online recently, so take it with a grain of salt. It seems pretty accurate, but I wouldn't know the best way to use that argument.

;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
166 Posts
shay2nak said:
i got a speeding ticket today driving home from work. I was wondering if any of you have gotten them and were able to fight the charges and get a dismissal.

I was driving alone on a one lane highway. It was overcast and cool. I was the only car in the lane. The patrol car was coming towards me, he had several cars behind him and in front of him, including a large van. I didn't see the cop because of the van. He didn't pull me over right away, i guess he had to stop and turn his car around.

He told me that he had me at 75 in a 55 using a laser. He showed it to me (cool setup) a laser in the front (left of the dash and one at the rear) his display is right over the tach/speedo and has some buttons on it. It read 75. He also told me that he gives tickets for people doing 75 and above, so if I were going 74 he would have "not bothered or wasted my time." I told him I was just relaxing and driving, I was being safe even though my lane was clear and that I didn't think that I was going that fast even though I was going above 55. He gave me the ticket and we parted.

Now, I have to fight this because A) i don't want to pay the fine of $400 B) I can't take traffic school because of the 18 month rule. I absolutely cannot let this go on my record. It will kill me. My parents will whoop my ass and I doubt that I will be able to afford the Elise because of insurance increase.

Because it is a laser, it is subject to error & calibration issues. The error is associated with electronics, obsticals, weather, and operator. Calibration is because over time things wear down, a watch has to be wound, a weight scale has to be reset, etc. They need to be calibrated over certain periods and be certified. I'm not sure how it operates and I'm not sure how he was alerted to my speed. Even an error of 1% would be enough to lower my speed from 75 People always say that you have to be lucky that the cop doesn't show up in court, but how would i find out when his vacation or day off is?

please help!!

I don't even know if i should bring up his statement of 75 or above. If I do then I would be admitting guilt right? All I'm trying to do is prove that I was going below 75 like the cop said. Or should i try to aim at 55?

Your logic on the under 75 won't work. You're correct in saying that it would be an admission of guilt. His policing policy is not the law. The law is 55. I would get an attorney. BUT, don't get a friend of a friend attorney, get someone who does this kidn of work a lot and is experienced in your county. Once prosecuters and judges get a feel for an attorney, things work much easier and quicker. Look in the phonebook and call around...it sounds like it would be worth it in your situation. By the way, how old are you for your parents to be an issue?
 

·
shay2nak
Joined
·
24,978 Posts
Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Re: Re: anyone beat a speeding ticket

AttorneyMike said:
Your logic on the under 75 won't work. You're correct in saying that it would be an admission of guilt. His policing policy is not the law. The law is 55. I would get an attorney. BUT, don't get a friend of a friend attorney, get someone who does this kidn of work a lot and is experienced in your county. Once prosecuters and judges get a feel for an attorney, things work much easier and quicker. Look in the phonebook and call around...it sounds like it would be worth it in your situation. By the way, how old are you for your parents to be an issue?
Thanks guys for your help, I appreciate it :clap:
yes the law is the law, but if his readout was at 74 then he would have not pulled me over and therefore would not have to go to court. How can the judge reasses the details of me being pulled over? He would have to question the police officer's decision making in handing out tickets. By the cop saying that he gives tickets for 75 and above, i consider that the law. The law is the law but it is also up for interpretation. People are left to interpret or excersice the law in whatever manner possible. That's why there are courts, judges, juries and lawyers. You will laugh your ass off, I'm 27. I still live with my parents, as I recently got a new job and I'm saving money. I pay them rent so I think of them more like roommates than my parents. I'm on my parents insurance also, none of the cars I drive are owned by me even though i've fully paid for one of them and am currently paying for the Merc. So any increase in insurance they will know and my dad always jumps to conclusions and freaks out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,577 Posts
What you're saying is that the cop's limit (and not the posted limit) is 'the law.' That's complete nonsense. Saying "I was only going 73 and you wouldn't have pulled me over for that." will at best get you a ticket for 73 instead of 75... If you ask the cop in court whether or not he would have pulled you over if you were 'only going 65' what do you think he'll say?

I've always considered it a sort of game. If I get pulled over and honestly know that I was speeding the law won that round. I accept responsibility and pay the ticket.

You're being indignant for being given a ticket when you've told us that you were speeding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,154 Posts
If you have already been to traffic school within a certain period (12 months or 18 months or whatever), you can't automatically do it again. But I believe that you can still petition the court for this option. However, as a repeat offender and 20 miles over the speed limit, you might not have much success.
 
1 - 20 of 47 Posts
Top