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 An officer just told me I had a bench warrant out for my arrest!
m23shooter  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:31:06 PM
Two years ago, my buddy borrowed my truck when his car was in the shop.

He is like a brother so no big deal.

I guess he got a parking ticket and was going to pay it but forgot.

He told me about it and I presumed he was going to take care of it.

TWO YEARS later, I get pulled over for speeding and the officer says, I am giving you a warning and letting you go but there is a bench warrant for $84 from a neighboring town.

And the LEO says if you get pulled by the cops in that town they will arrest you and tow your car. Its how they make money for their town.

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense? I did get a postcard that said I was delinquent on the fine and I gave it my buddy. He paid the $84 since.
California_Kid  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:32:25 PM
You never received notification by mail of the ticket?
AR15fan  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:32:55 PM
I have never seen a bench warrant for a parking ticket but have been told some states do in fact do it that way.
AR15fan  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:33:55 PM
Originally Posted By California_Kid:
You never received notification by mail of the ticket?


Important reason to make sure you update your vehicle registration/DMV with your current mailing address anytime you move!
Fullpower  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:36:01 PM
Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By California_Kid:
You never received notification by mail of the ticket?


Important reason to make sure you update your vehicle registration/DMV with your current mailing address anytime you move!

NO.
Entirely WRONG advice.
The true solution here is to make damn sure your loaner vehicles are NOT registered in your name,
preferably not registered at ALL.

-Apocalypto-  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:36:43 PM
Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By California_Kid:
You never received notification by mail of the ticket?


Important reason to make sure you update your vehicle registration/DMV with your current mailing address anytime you move!


It's amazing how many people don't keep their address up to date on their regristration and license.
JLH3  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:39:24 PM
You can get a Failure to Pay warrant in Arizona.
m23shooter  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:43:12 PM
No notices that I saw and I did move in the last year.

I asked the clerk about it and she said they send a computer printed post card and that it.

If you dont show up in a certain time frame to pay, they rule you in contempt of a court order to pay and issue a warrant!

WTF. Thats pretty ruthless for a parking ticket that I thought was paid!

I am just grateful there are real professional LEOs who see through BS and gave me the warning.
Plattekill  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:44:32 PM
You are sure he paid, right?

'cause he is your buddy.

The one who didn't tell you.

Right?
1811guy  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:44:57 PM
OP - call the city attorney and get it resolved. If you pay the original fine, they are likely to drop the warrant. Go beat the piss out of your "friend" for being a douche and not taking responsibility. Then get the money from him to pay the fine.
m23shooter  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:45:44 PM
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.
hamboneBobby  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:46:34 PM
Call down to the agency that holds the warrant and find out when you can turn yourself in. Then get $84 and your photo ID and go take care of it. If you do that here, you go right before the judge without being arrested. Then punch your friend in the balls. Oh yeah, and the thing about updating your address with the secretary of state, that's true also.
sum-rifle  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:46:47 PM
You are the registered owner of the vehicle. You are presumed responsible for the ticket. The arrestable offense is I am guessing "Failure to appear". Glad your friend paid it but the Officers would have been justified in arresting you and towing your vehicle as long as there was an active warrant for your arrest.
hamboneBobby  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:47:57 PM
Taken care of? Disregard my last
nightstalker  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:48:38 PM
I would take it to the Supreme Court.

I nearly got taken in one time but the cop said head up the hill to the court and pay or I'll be back later. I was at work and they were there to take me in. 1970's
Hillbilly69  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:51:35 PM
Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


Well, if you're wise, you'll keep a copy of it in your glove box just in case.

AKSig  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:52:35 PM

Originally Posted By AR15fan:
I have never seen a bench warrant for a parking ticket but have been told some states do in fact do it that way.

I would have gone to jail for awhile if you got warrants for parking tickets when I was a Shop at Home rep for a blind and shutter manufacturer in L.A. about 9 years ago.

Went to register my car one year and had $900 in tickets and fines.

I got 1-2 tickets a week and tried to keep up with them but obviously some fell through the cracks.


BatchelorGroda  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 2:53:25 PM
Originally Posted By m23shooter:
Two years ago, my buddy borrowed my truck when his car was in the shop.

He is like a brother so no big deal.

I guess he got a parking ticket and was going to pay it but forgot.

He told me about it and I presumed he was going to take care of it.

TWO YEARS later, I get pulled over for speeding and the officer says, I am giving you a warning and letting you go but there is a bench warrant for $84 from a neighboring town.

And the LEO says if you get pulled by the cops in that town they will arrest you and tow your car. Its how they make money for their town.

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense? I did get a postcard that said I was delinquent on the fine and I gave it my buddy. He paid the $84 since.


Well, apparently he did not.
CBR900  [Member]
2/9/2012 2:57:05 PM
Originally Posted By JLH3:
You can get a Failure to Pay warrant in Arizona.


I believe MD does it that way. Speeding tickets also turn into court dates & missing a court date will result in a warrant.

larryparamedic  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:21:27 PM
Not the same situation, but I got a parking violation in an area that was contestably miss-labeled (-signed?) at the STL zoo years ago in Missouri.
I thought screw the zoo I'm not paying this. A few months after the violation my Illinois Driver's License AND Fishing Permit were suspended pending my paying that parking fine. I paid, but still can't believe they can do that legally.
Bigshot64  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:27:21 PM
"you'll never catch me!"
Old_Painless  [Life Member]
2/9/2012 3:31:08 PM
Originally Posted By m23shooter:

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense?


A parking ticket is not a "civil matter". It is a criminal offense and if you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for you.

SRT_312  [Member]
2/9/2012 3:32:08 PM
You cant believe they can suspend you rstate licenses for failing to pay a legal citation? What, pray tell, do you believe, then? Thats one is pretty easy...

As for why the good officer didn't arrest you,he most likely could not. Parking violations are typically a municipal issue, heard in a municipal court, by a Municipal Judge. Municipal Judges, in most states, can only issue municipal warrants, which can only be served by municipal officers. Those officers can travel anywhere in the state to serve that warrant, but no other law enforcement officer has the ability to arrest or hold someone on it.
FLATFOOT762  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:32:33 PM

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.
NorCal_LEO  [Site Staff]
2/9/2012 3:37:48 PM
If I tried to arrest someone on a parking warrant, I would get laughed out of the jail.

Glad you were able to get it cleared up. Not exactly what you want to hear from a cop when you get pulled over.
MotorMouth  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:50:08 PM
In Ohio, not only do you get a warrant for such things, but they also put a "warrant block" on your driver's license and your auto registration. So when you go to get either renewed, you can't until you pay off the ticket.
c0t0d0s0  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:55:10 PM
Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
Originally Posted By m23shooter:

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense?


A parking ticket is not a "civil matter". It is a criminal offense and if you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for you.



Are you sure? I thought it was civil so that the state had a lower burden of proof.
FMD  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 3:56:17 PM
Originally Posted By FLATFOOT762:

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.


It certainly has happened before, and it doesn't take a "friend" screwing up to get there. No shit, there I was...

I had a parking ticket that I paid go unaccounted for from a municipality. Notification of an unpaid ticket / pending license suspension / hearing sent to a bum address (DMV system error). I didn't show, since I had zero knowledge of the problem.

The judge issued a warrant for failure to appear and the DMV suspended my license - sending that notification to a non-existent address as well. A few months later I got pulled over for a "bad" / out of date emissions inspection sticker (this was in NJ, and it's a common fishing tactic - or at least it was, since we know cops never fish).

I was arrested for driving while suspended. Cuffed & stuffed despite producing a copy of the receipt for payment of the ticket before getting out of the driver's seat. Booked into jail and had to be bailed out.

The township that issued the ticket admitted fault for not accounting for the paid ticket.

The DMV admitted fault for not notifying me correctly (on two occasions) due to the clerical error on the delivery address.

Prosecutor (who, strangely enough was my Mom's senior prom date) wouldn't let it go, and I was still convicted by the judge that issued the warrant for driving while suspended, because I was, in fact, driving while my license was suspended.

I guess Mom didn't put out way back when.
SRT_312  [Member]
2/9/2012 3:57:35 PM
Originally Posted By c0t0d0s0:
Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
Originally Posted By m23shooter:

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense?


A parking ticket is not a "civil matter". It is a criminal offense and if you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for you.



Are you sure? I thought it was civil so that the state had a lower burden of proof.


Texas has different rules. Many traffic infractions are, in fact, civil in nature. I am sure parking is one of them, but I am not 100% sure. That being said....even though the infraction may be civil, Failure to Appear in court is not.
nictra  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 4:13:22 PM
My youth director of my church was arrested for parking tickets in Dallas....

ETA: this was almost 30yrs ago though
Razoreye  [Member]
2/9/2012 4:19:49 PM
Well I know one city in KY that doesn't do that for parking tickets. I probably have a half dozen unpaid.
turboscott  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 4:23:13 PM
Go to the popo, you gonna get raped.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
Hillbilly69  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 5:46:22 PM
Originally Posted By FLATFOOT762:

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.



Which is precisely why I said earlier that the paperwork associated with this issue should be kept in his vehicle(s).

Trust me on this.

learath  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 5:55:49 PM
Originally Posted By sum-rifle:
You are the registered owner of the vehicle. You are presumed responsible for the ticket. The arrestable offense is I am guessing "Failure to appear". Glad your friend paid it but the Officers would have been justified in arresting you and towing your vehicle as long as there was an active warrant for your arrest.


wow. Kidnapping and theft over an 84$ ticket? What a racket. Oh, this is the government, so it's not extortion!
learath  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 6:53:42 PM
Originally Posted By SRT_312:
Originally Posted By c0t0d0s0:
Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
Originally Posted By m23shooter:

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense?


A parking ticket is not a "civil matter". It is a criminal offense and if you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for you.



Are you sure? I thought it was civil so that the state had a lower burden of proof.


Texas has different rules. Many traffic infractions are, in fact, civil in nature. I am sure parking is one of them, but I am not 100% sure. That being said....even though the infraction may be civil, Failure to Appear in court is not.


In VA I'm pretty sure most traffic infractions are considered civil for exactly that reason. The state is unwilling to meet the burden of proof required for a criminal case.
wilNva  [Member]
2/9/2012 6:57:17 PM
You own someone donughts.
afroney  [Member]
2/9/2012 7:10:32 PM
Originally Posted By CBR900:
Originally Posted By JLH3:
You can get a Failure to Pay warrant in Arizona.


I believe MD does it that way. Speeding tickets also turn into court dates & missing a court date will result in a warrant.



This. IA does as well. A couple of years ago, I forgot to pay a speeding ticket. Local cop showed up to my house and said there was a warrant out for my arrest for non payment of the ticket. He simply gave me a friendly reminder to pay the ticket off online.
Old_Painless  [Life Member]
2/9/2012 7:11:04 PM
Originally Posted By c0t0d0s0:
Originally Posted By Old_Painless:
Originally Posted By m23shooter:

So is this even legal? How can a civil matter become an arresting offense?


A parking ticket is not a "civil matter". It is a criminal offense and if you do not appear, a warrant will be issued for you.



Are you sure? I thought it was civil so that the state had a lower burden of proof.


I was speaking of Texas.

Not sure about the other states.

piccolo  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 7:14:36 PM




I'm at the top of the world, Ma!

You coppers will never take me alive!!!
hkusp  [Member]
2/9/2012 7:38:49 PM
Its all about paying the Money. Pay money, get out of trouble. Pay money, get suspended drivers license reinstated.................................
Jarhead08  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 8:15:54 PM

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
No notices that I saw and I did move in the last year.

I asked the clerk about it and she said they send a computer printed post card and that it.

If you dont show up in a certain time frame to pay, they rule you in contempt of a court order to pay and issue a warrant!

WTF. Thats pretty ruthless for a parking ticket that I thought was paid!

I am just grateful there are real professional LEOs who see through BS and gave me the warning.

In all reality the issuing agency might not have wanted to come pick you up and transport you to their agency, hence he wasn't going to hook you up if they wouldn't get you. We have that happen all the time especially on Muni Warrants. I let em go and tell them to take care of it.
SteveInNC  [Team Member]
2/9/2012 9:04:52 PM
Originally Posted By FMD:
Originally Posted By FLATFOOT762:

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.


It certainly has happened before, and it doesn't take a "friend" screwing up to get there. No shit, there I was...

I had a parking ticket that I paid go unaccounted for from a municipality. Notification of an unpaid ticket / pending license suspension / hearing sent to a bum address (DMV system error). I didn't show, since I had zero knowledge of the problem.

The judge issued a warrant for failure to appear and the DMV suspended my license - sending that notification to a non-existent address as well. A few months later I got pulled over for a "bad" / out of date emissions inspection sticker (this was in NJ, and it's a common fishing tactic - or at least it was, since we know cops never fish).

I was arrested for driving while suspended. Cuffed & stuffed despite producing a copy of the receipt for payment of the ticket before getting out of the driver's seat. Booked into jail and had to be bailed out.

The township that issued the ticket admitted fault for not accounting for the paid ticket.

The DMV admitted fault for not notifying me correctly (on two occasions) due to the clerical error on the delivery address.

Prosecutor (who, strangely enough was my Mom's senior prom date) wouldn't let it go, and I was still convicted by the judge that issued the warrant for driving while suspended, because I was, in fact, driving while my license was suspended.

I guess Mom didn't put out way back when.


I would have appealed that until hell froze over......
jaholder1971  [Team Member]
2/10/2012 1:01:35 AM
Originally Posted By SteveInNC:
Originally Posted By FMD:
Originally Posted By FLATFOOT762:

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.


It certainly has happened before, and it doesn't take a "friend" screwing up to get there. No shit, there I was...

I had a parking ticket that I paid go unaccounted for from a municipality. Notification of an unpaid ticket / pending license suspension / hearing sent to a bum address (DMV system error). I didn't show, since I had zero knowledge of the problem.

The judge issued a warrant for failure to appear and the DMV suspended my license - sending that notification to a non-existent address as well. A few months later I got pulled over for a "bad" / out of date emissions inspection sticker (this was in NJ, and it's a common fishing tactic - or at least it was, since we know cops never fish).

I was arrested for driving while suspended. Cuffed & stuffed despite producing a copy of the receipt for payment of the ticket before getting out of the driver's seat. Booked into jail and had to be bailed out.

The township that issued the ticket admitted fault for not accounting for the paid ticket.

The DMV admitted fault for not notifying me correctly (on two occasions) due to the clerical error on the delivery address.

Prosecutor (who, strangely enough was my Mom's senior prom date) wouldn't let it go, and I was still convicted by the judge that issued the warrant for driving while suspended, because I was, in fact, driving while my license was suspended.

I guess Mom didn't put out way back when.


I would have appealed that until hell froze over......


No shit, then made a complaint against the prosecutor with the state bar.
packingXDs  [Team Member]
2/10/2012 1:16:24 AM

Originally Posted By MotorMouth:
In Ohio, not only do you get a warrant for such things, but they also put a "warrant block" on your driver's license and your auto registration. So when you go to get either renewed, you can't until you pay off the ticket.

TX does that as well. Have a letter on my desk stating the exact same.
www-glock19-com  [Team Member]
2/10/2012 1:27:08 AM
Who was it on here that got a failure to pay/appear notice the mail
for a parking ticket in NYC when they were living in OH IIRC and had never been to NYC in their life
SRT_312  [Member]
2/10/2012 1:32:02 AM
I was arrested for driving while suspended. Cuffed & stuffed despite producing a copy of the receipt for payment of the ticket before getting out of the driver's seat. Booked into jail and had to be bailed out.


An officer on the street does not have the legal leeway to void a warrant. Once a warrant has been issued, it is a legal order of the court. If the warrant is in error, the responsibility of error if on the court. If you read a warrant, it states "Shall Arrest and Bring Before the Court." Shall, in legal terms, means must, under penalty of law.
RolandBozz  [Team Member]
2/10/2012 1:42:06 AM
I've seen people get warrants for not showing up in court over not having their dog licensed.
SRT_312  [Member]
2/10/2012 1:45:54 AM
Originally Posted By RolandBozz:
I've seen people get warrants for not showing up in court over not having their dog licensed.


Absolutely. Its hard to explain to folks that they are not being arrested for speeding/parking tickets/animal at large/etc....but that the warrant is for failing to appear in court.
FMD  [Team Member]
2/14/2012 1:36:39 PM
Originally Posted By jaholder1971:
Originally Posted By SteveInNC:
Originally Posted By FMD:
Originally Posted By FLATFOOT762:

Originally Posted By m23shooter:
He paid, He came with me and I have a letter saying the warrant has been lifted.


It could be that someone failed to remove the warrant out of the system after your friend took care of it. I've seen it happen before.


It certainly has happened before, and it doesn't take a "friend" screwing up to get there. No shit, there I was...

I had a parking ticket that I paid go unaccounted for from a municipality. Notification of an unpaid ticket / pending license suspension / hearing sent to a bum address (DMV system error). I didn't show, since I had zero knowledge of the problem.

The judge issued a warrant for failure to appear and the DMV suspended my license - sending that notification to a non-existent address as well. A few months later I got pulled over for a "bad" / out of date emissions inspection sticker (this was in NJ, and it's a common fishing tactic - or at least it was, since we know cops never fish).

I was arrested for driving while suspended. Cuffed & stuffed despite producing a copy of the receipt for payment of the ticket before getting out of the driver's seat. Booked into jail and had to be bailed out.

The township that issued the ticket admitted fault for not accounting for the paid ticket.

The DMV admitted fault for not notifying me correctly (on two occasions) due to the clerical error on the delivery address.

Prosecutor (who, strangely enough was my Mom's senior prom date) wouldn't let it go, and I was still convicted by the judge that issued the warrant for driving while suspended, because I was, in fact, driving while my license was suspended.

I guess Mom didn't put out way back when.


I would have appealed that until hell froze over......


No shit, then made a complaint against the prosecutor with the state bar.


I was a 21 year old kid who really didn't know any better.

At this point, my attorney's business card sits behind my DL in my wallet. Live and learn.


ETA: The officer was very nice while arresting me, but I understand he had no (or at least very little) discretion in the matter.
Panzergrenadier  [Member]
2/14/2012 2:31:32 PM
Originally Posted By Fullpower:
Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By California_Kid:
You never received notification by mail of the ticket?


Important reason to make sure you update your vehicle registration/DMV with your current mailing address anytime you move!

NO.
Entirely WRONG advice.
The true solution here is to make damn sure your loaner vehicles are NOT registered in your name,
preferably not registered at ALL.



I think it's your advice that is completely wrong.

Unreg vehicle in my state is a misd. offense, as are most all traffic offenses.








unless my sarcasm meter is busted, that is.
Panzergrenadier  [Member]
2/14/2012 2:34:04 PM
Originally Posted By m23shooter:
No notices that I saw and I did move in the last year.

I asked the clerk about it and she said they send a computer printed post card and that it.

If you dont show up in a certain time frame to pay, they rule you in contempt of a court order to pay and issue a warrant!

WTF. Thats pretty ruthless for a parking ticket that I thought was paid!

I am just grateful there are real professional LEOs who see through BS and gave me the warning.


I guess you were lucky. Where I work, we are bound to serve a warrant, regardless of jurisdiction. Now, if the issuing agency will not extradite due to distance or whatever, then you are free to go. Outside of tat, you'll probably take the ride, unless other, exigencies exist.