I'm going to court...

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I'm going to court...

Postby Peter on Tue Jan 31, 2006 7:06 pm

traffic court, that is! On Thursday. Any advice? This will be my first time in any sort of a court situation. I have pictures to prove that I couldn't see a handicap yellow marking because it was covered in snow, and also the sign was tilted so you couldn't see it from my car's perspective.

But have any of you ever been to traffic court? Advice?
Peter
 

Tip

Postby Diddy on Tue Jan 31, 2006 7:46 pm

Do not show up drunk or smelling of alcohol. That may hamper your chances I heard...
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Re: Tip

Postby Peter on Tue Jan 31, 2006 7:50 pm

Diddy wrote:Do not show up drunk or smelling of alcohol. That may hamper your chances I heard...
Really? Aw, man.
Peter
 

Postby scb147 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 8:04 pm

I thought you were Amish, why the wheels? :lol:
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Postby Peter on Tue Jan 31, 2006 8:09 pm

scb147 wrote:I thought you were Amish, why the wheels? :lol:
Ididn't tell God yet.
Peter
 

Postby netwolf on Tue Jan 31, 2006 9:32 pm

Peter wrote:Ididn't tell God yet.


I hate to tell you this, but I think he knows... :wink:
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Postby spoon on Tue Jan 31, 2006 10:11 pm

JESUS HATES YOU!
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Postby FallenHero96 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 10:55 pm

The snow over the paint could be a valid excuse... but if there was a sign there also, you are going to have a problem. Even if the sign was bent.

Its a technicality... depends on how the judge is feeling. But when you go, make sure you look and speak professional, most of all be honest.
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Postby Mango Salsa on Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:05 pm

Good advice here.

Usually if you just show up & don't act like an ass the judge will at least reduce the penalty.

I think you may have a good chance of having the charges dismissed.

Let us know what happens!
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Postby Ricardo on Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:29 pm

I went to court only once, but had a lawyer friend give me very good advice: 1. State the facts of the case, but don't waste the judge's time trying to pursuade him with what you think are supporting, but irrelevant, arguments; 2. Almost immediately you will have a gut feeling whether you won or lost, and your gut will be right.
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Postby Tomas on Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:44 pm

My advice - dress really, really sharp (good suit, tie...). You will totally stand out, because most of the other "fellow defendants" will look at least 3-4 leagues below you. Be as polite as possible. You may want to insert "Well, I just returned from Europe, and..." :lol:

If your judge is any similar to mine, he will be biased to treat people "in his own class" better. In my case, it meant reducing the penalty - missing driver's licence ("Well, I just returned from Europe, and I left it in my other wallet." "Oh, really, you were in Europe? Where?") + speeding warning - down to $0.

I was the only one who left with $0 penalty that day - and all the other people hated me so very much when I was going down the isle in the courtroom. 8)
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Postby Kicksave on Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:05 am

Tomas is right, dress as nice as possible.

Also, don't make anything up. Just admit you're wrong and show remorse for your actions.

My personal experience, I got caught doing 87 in a 65 :oops: on a rainy day. I worked for a car dealership at the time and I was driving with a dealer's plate. Well, the plate that I happen to have been using had 4 or 5 DUIs on it. To add salt to the wound, I didn't have the insurance card through my work and I didn't have the license plate where it was supposed to be because I was driving a brand new Chevy Cavalier and the plate kit wasn't installed yet.

Well, I went to court to fight the four tickets the state trooper gave me. To my surprise, the cop actually showed up. He got to talk first and he gave a 5 to 10 minute speach on how his radar gun is damn near flawless when its rainy because I guess he thought I was going to argue that.

All I did was said I was sorry. I explained that it was a dealers plate and I was unaware of the prior DUIs on it. I also had a letter drawn up from the owner of my dealership stating that I was a good worker and that I was following what I was told with the license plate. I claimed that I straight up forgot the proof of insurance in the copier and I also had the salesman who I was driving for there. He was pressuring me to get back fast so that he could sell the car.

She dropped all of the charges except the speeding, she declined it to the bare minimum, no points and a small fine.
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Postby relantel on Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:20 am

we (I) got caught dead to rights doing 80 in a 65 on the turnpike extension, just south of the main toll booth, one thanksgiving several years ago. You know, the hill you crest just after having stopped at the toll booth, not far from 119 and New Stanton, but before Arona road. The state cop was really nice, and ended up writing the ticket not for speeding, but failure to obey a highway sign, which was not a moving violation. (Never mind that these out of state things never make it back to VA).

We were dead to rights, so we paid that one without a second thought. But I had been stopped a couple of times in Virginia, once in Fairfax County in 1999, and the other in Manassas City in 2000, where I did fight them, once for speeding, and another time for alledgedly running a stop sign. Got both thrown out by the respective judge on technicalities -- one got the date wrong, i.e. right day of week, wrong date (officer was four days off), and the other, the cop admitted she had seen my car stopped, and that she couldn't see the white line on the pavement.

Long story short, if there is evidence that supports your claim, you might stand a decent chance of winning. It is not impossible to win on such things. But unless you have convincing evidence, traffic/parking violations in this country are more often treated guilty until proven innocent. If it is in PA, beware some jurisdictions charge you more to plead not-guilty than to pay & plead guilty. (Had that happen across the river from Harrisburg back in 1993)
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Postby Mango Salsa on Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:52 pm

Welllll??? What happened????
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Postby Peter on Fri Feb 03, 2006 6:06 pm

Mango Salsa wrote:Welllll??? What happened????


oh, well the judge reduced my ticket from $240 to $50, but with towing and court costs, it was still a pricey affair. But I'm glad I went.
Peter
 


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