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Unread 05-18-2010, 11:50 PM   #1
NateWithoutBeer
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Beat a speeding ticket?

A little background: I've always gotten along with cops. I respect what they do and that they put their lives on the line. I always give the "yes sir" treatment and have deserved both of the tickets I've ever gotten (passing a bus when I was 16 and speeding on a road trip through central California when I was about 23, six years ago). I never even thought about fighting one because I deserved them.

This morning I'm driving my pops to work after picking him up from the dentist around 10:30 (we work at the same office) and I'm cruising down the 163 in the lane next to the fast lane and telling Dad a story. I pass a bike cop in the fast lane and he immediately lights me up. He was doing 75, I was doing about 78. I pull over and give him my license. He says "I was going 75. You passed me. The limit's 65."

I say "Yes sir you're right, I'm sorry."

"Most people slow down when they see a cop"

"Yes sir. I was telling my dad here a story and I guess I was a little distracted."

"Who does a thing like that?"

"I'm sorry sir, you're right."

Then he looks at my dad and says "Not very smart thing to do is it?". My dad shrugs and he walks back to his bike.

So at this point my Dad and I look at each other because we both think the guy's being a total **** despite me being cooperative and polite. I don't let it show, though. He comes back, gives me the ticket and I go about my day.

Here's the thing that gets me (other than his attitude and trying to get my Dad to agree with him that I'm an idiot): I've driven this commute every day for nine years. I never weave through traffic. I'm always courteous. I go with the flow which is usually 70-80. On my way home today I'm doing 75 and getting passed on both sides. Was I breaking the law? You bet. Do I think I deserve to have to pay $200-$400 for this? No way (there goes the Aussie I was going to pick up...). The only reason I was stopped is because I happened to be in a section of road where there weren't a lot of cars going that fast.

I've heard some people say you can fight a "pacing" ticket (he didn't have me on radar - ticket's written as "pace" at "75+"), but I don't want to fight it, lose, and then get the point on my record (even though I don't and never have had any points). I know we've got a few ex-cops in the group. Any advice? Is this thing beatable or am I stuck paying the dummy tax for passing a cop?

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Unread 05-19-2010, 12:04 AM   #2
ReconBen
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I would just pay it. If the speed limit is indeed 65 it makes absolutely no difference that you drive faster everydays and so does everyone else. The speed limit is still 65 legally. Also by your own admission you said "I was a little distracted" Just be happy he didn't ticket you for something relating to this as well. As being a distracted driver can get people killed. Do we all get distracted sometimes? ofcourse, do we all speed sometimes? ofcourse

However when you admit such things to an LEO you are asking for a ticket. You should always be polite however you do not have to agree that you were in the wrong verbally. Or you will have to lie in court to get out of the ticket.

I say your stuck paying the "dummy tax" on this one. However you might be able to go to the courthouse and get the fine lowered.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 12:06 AM   #3
1990JEEPXJ
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essentialy you broke the law, and admit it. there is no way you can beat it. i have been given tickets for less so i feel your pain man. im the same way with cops, very cooperative just like you were today. your best bet is pleading guilty and saying what you said here to the judge. youll get the fine lowered.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 12:39 AM   #4
ankyle62
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dude, you passed a cop going 78. the speed limit is 65mph. you would have been fine if you didnt pass him, but passing a cop when you are exceeding the speed limit is like poking a bee hive, dont cry when you get stung.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 12:52 AM   #5
NateWithoutBeer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ankyle62 View Post
passing a cop when you are exceeding the speed limit is like poking a bee hive
True enough, and any other day without my pops in the car it probably wouldn't have happened. I wouldn't be so angry if I hadn't been for a locker lately. As mad at myself as anything, sorry for the long rant.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 07:26 AM   #6
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You could go to court, plead stupidity and say you were not watching your speedo and thought you were going with the flow.

best case you might get the fine amount reduced, that seems like a common outcome these days.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 09:22 AM   #7
SDDAVE
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I feel bad for you, but I don't think you have a viable defense. Wether he paced you or used radar doesn't matter. The speedometers are calibrated every four months.

I was never trained on radar so all my speed tickets were based on pacing the defendant. I never lost a speed ticket in court. My tickets were 15mph + the speed limit, so easier to win.

So your options are, plead not guilty, plead guilty and request driving school, or just pay the fine. Any statements that the Officer made that were, in your opinion, unprofessional are irrelevant to the case.

Don't waste your money on a Lawyer. It would crack me up that people would spend money on a Lawyer just to see if the Cop showed up in court.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 09:36 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SDDAVE View Post
Don't waste your money on a Lawyer. It would crack me up that people would spend money on a Lawyer just to see if the Cop showed up in court.
I pay for a lawyer just to avoid points on my license and an increase insurance bill... Granted, I dont get pulled over alot, but its more of a just in case. If I had just paid every ticket I had ever received, I would have been without a license a few years back. Not that im proud of that, I was a reckless kid.


To the OP. I respect you being nice, in this case you knew it was your fault, either pay the ticket or pay a lawyer, whatever... Some cops are just punks who hide behind a badge. You coulda offered that guy your wife for the weekend and he probably would have taken her to a nice seafood dinner, and then never call her again... Rude is rude, with or without a badge.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 09:56 AM   #9
SDDAVE
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In Ca. a Lawyer can't do much more for you, than you can do for yourself. Unless your driving record is going to get you jail time. So save the money, use it towards the fine, or driving school.

There are some people who want to appear but cant, then hire an attorney.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 10:04 AM   #10
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This is why you say nothing to the officer when he approaches the window and throughout the stop. You admitted to everything and I promise he has it all documented. I'm one of those people who isn't polite (but not rude) and doesn't say please, thank you, or I'm sorry. I say nothing because I don't have to.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 10:15 AM   #11
RikRotorhead
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You can't go to court. You will loose. Guaranteed.
VERY few speed tickets ever go the defendants way.
Even if you claim 'going with the flow', you passed the cop going with the flow. Even if his speed indicated an 'implied safe speed', you passed him.
He can also say he was going that fast because he was pacing a car ahead of him and you recklessly sped past him.
Anyway you look at it you loose.
Best bet, go pay the fine in advance and go to traffic school to keep your insurance company from hearing about it.
We all bust the speed limit almost every time we get behind the wheel. Just sometimes you get caught. Nature of the odds.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 10:17 AM   #12
1990JEEPXJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinTJer View Post
I pay for a lawyer just to avoid points on my license and an increase insurance bill... Granted, I dont get pulled over alot, but its more of a just in case. If I had just paid every ticket I had ever received, I would have been without a license a few years back. Not that im proud of that, I was a reckless kid.
not sure of the law in TX but in CA if your tickets are more than 18 months apart, you can go to traffic school for them and there will be no point on your license, and no insurance increase. but thats only if you go to traffic school, even then you still have to pay the fine, hich was probably reduced some in court, + the traffic school fees which is somewhere in the $30-50 range

Quote:
Originally Posted by RikRotorhead View Post
You can't go to court. You will loose. Guaranteed.
VERY few speed tickets ever go the defendants way.
Even if you claim 'going with the flow', you passed the cop going with the flow. Even if his speed indicated an 'implied safe speed', you passed him.
He can also say he was going that fast because he was pacing a car ahead of him and you recklessly sped past him.
Anyway you look at it you loose.
Best bet, go pay the fine in advance and go to traffic school to keep your insurance company from hearing about it.
We all bust the speed limit almost every time we get behind the wheel. Just sometimes you get caught. Nature of the odds.
he can go to court, and plead guilty, with explanation, and sort of plead his case, make a point he hasnt got a ticket in a long time, blah blah blah woah is me type thing and most likely his fine will be reduced, especially if he tells the judge he is going to traffic school.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Dillard View Post
Yea, and I thought it was one of the 11 Commandments:
11) Thou shalt love, cherish, and honor till death, thine square headlights above all other earthy things sayith the Lord.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 10:19 AM   #13
AustinCJer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1990JEEPXJ View Post
not sure of the law in TX but in CA if your tickets are more than 18 months apart, you can go to traffic school for them and there will be no point on your license, and no insurance increase. but thats only if you go to traffic school, even then you still have to pay the fine, hich was probably reduced some in court, + the traffic school fees which is somewhere in the $30-50 range
Same here... Like I said, ive grown up a little since my "big ticket" days... But for example, in Michigan, I was able to get a ticket reduced to a non-moving violation for $200... the ticket was going to cost me $150 and points if I just paid it... so an extra $50 and no record, im good with that.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 10:35 AM   #14
RikRotorhead
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1990JEEPXJ View Post
not sure of the law in TX but in CA if your tickets are more than 18 months apart, you can go to traffic school for them and there will be no point on your license, and no insurance increase. but thats only if you go to traffic school, even then you still have to pay the fine, hich was probably reduced some in court, + the traffic school fees which is somewhere in the $30-50 range



he can go to court, and plead guilty, with explanation, and sort of plead his case, make a point he hasnt got a ticket in a long time, blah blah blah woah is me type thing and most likely his fine will be reduced, especially if he tells the judge he is going to traffic school.
I wouldn't chance it. I've seen them deny traffic school if the judge feels you need to learn a lesson. In court the judge is not required to allow traffic school if you plead guilty.

His defense was/is:
Quote:
"Yes sir. I was telling my dad here a story and I guess I was a little distracted."
(All traffic stops are voice recorded and filmed with every stop to assist the officer in remembering the incident and to be used as evidence. The wireless microphone is in his shirt pocket.)

That sort of counteracts the "I'm a good driver because I haven't had a ticket in a long time" argument. Loosely translated by the judge: "I haven't been caught speeding for a long time".

Not paying attention to your driving enough to speed to nearly 80 mph in a 65 zone, and pass a cop that was pacing another car for speeding?

I hope the judge has a good sense of humor and is in a good mood.

Getting busted for speeding by being paced or radar is one thing, but passing a speeding cop is another.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 11:05 AM   #15
NateWithoutBeer
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Thanks for all the replies, guys. Looks like it's going to be traffic school and $$. I guess that after not getting a ticket for so long and driving in packs of cars almost daily that are passing speeding cops you start to think they just don't stop people unless they're busting 85. Lesson learned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RikRotorhead View Post
All traffic stops are voice recorded and filmed with every stop to assist the officer in remembering the incident and to be used as evidence. The wireless microphone is in his shirt pocket.
That's good to know. As I said I respect cops and I'm not going to sit there and lie to his face, I was just hoping (praying) for some leniency, didn't get it. Oh well, happens. If you see me on the 15/163 I'll be the guy doing 70 and getting passed on all sides for the next few years
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