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Posted: 10/4/2007 8:09:57 AM EST
Ok, last night i recieved a ticket on my motorcycle for "Fail to stop @ red light" and a Speeding violation (75 in a 40). The officer says i slowed down at the flashing red light, looked both ways, but i rolled through it without a complete stop. I asked if he had radar or laser evidence that showed me doing 75 in a 40. They don't have radar in the cars, he says that he was "pacing" me using his vehicle's speedometer. At no time was he even all that close to me, and the point where he finally lit me up, is probably a mile from the flashing redlight. What should i do from here?
Link Posted: 10/4/2007 8:24:12 AM EST
You can not chalenge him on the failure to stop.

However you can chalenge him on the pacing part of the speeding ticket.
You can demand a ccalibration certificate for that speedometer. If the speedometer was not calibrated you can challenge on reasonable doubt based on the chance of the speedometer not reading speeds correctly.

Case in point, in Austin a transport ambulance was paced as doing 85 in a 55 zone by APD. It was proved in court that the apd had no calibrated speedometer and the ambulance had a govenor that would not allow the ambulace to top 60mph. case dismissed.

consult a lawyer
Link Posted: 10/4/2007 8:48:26 AM EST
Well, he says he was pacing me, but on the ticket it doesn't say anything about that. He checked the box "personal observation" I'm trying to find a lawyer right now, i plan on contesting the speeding violation, the fail to stop, i can live with.
Link Posted: 10/4/2007 10:07:35 AM EST
If it is a police package car, they are certified from the factory. The even say "calibrated" on the speedo.

He may be trained in estimation. That meets the court's requirement.

The exact speed could be argued, but the point is you were over the limit. Whether it is 1 mph or 100, you were breaking the law and that is all they have to prove.
Link Posted: 10/4/2007 2:15:39 PM EST
No way i was speeding, i watch my speedometer closely. and even if i were speeding, it might have been 5-10mph over, not 35mph over as he claims. I believe the officer is against me, simply because he saw me not completely stop for the flashing red, and i've got a bike that looks like it's running 100mph when it's parked. It's also loud, and draws attention.
Link Posted: 10/5/2007 4:15:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/5/2007 4:31:26 PM EST by DeltaII5]
He was behind you and cited you for failure to stop? That's one hell of a judgement call, must be low on his quota

In PA speedos and radar must be calibrated every 60 or might be 90 days. I'd assume Texas has something similiar. But that doesn't really matter as it has nothing to do with your ticket, your were cited for failure to stop, not speeding.
Link Posted: 10/6/2007 4:31:52 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/6/2007 4:32:17 AM EST by MarineDwg9]
In many jurisdictions, officers fail to show up on the court date pretty regularly. If you show up for the court date, and the officer doesn't, many judges dismiss it right then. Even if he does show up, just ask the solicitor if you can work it out. Contest the speeding with them and offer to plea to the failure to stop if they agree to drop the speeding charge. You would be well advised to pay for a lawyer. It will likely be much cheaper than what you will pay in fines and insurance premiums. I haven't looked at Texas' statutes, but you may even have to complete a defensive driver course or suspend your license.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 1:24:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By OLY-M4gery:

Funny thing on a motorcycle if you don't hit the ground with your feet, you haven't stopped.


That's funny... I can stop (no forward or rearward momentum) for 3-4 seconds on my motorcycle.
Link Posted: 10/8/2007 1:30:33 PM EST
Just imagine IF you had an equal shot in court against a LEO.

Just imagine......that's all you can do.

Bill
Link Posted: 10/9/2007 5:08:54 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/9/2007 5:09:57 PM EST by liquidneba]
So far I'm 2-0 in winning speeding tickets at trial .ie judge, court reporter, witness, ADA, verdict, me kicking butt. Both were in the same locality with the same judge. (Very bad luck.) But I prevailed. If the place you got nailed is close to you in driving distance and you have the stomach for it... fight it!!!

Definetly check the National Motorists Association (just google it). I've been a member for a few years, and they have a legal defense kit for people who want to fight their ticket. I used the kit in conjunction with my own research on traffic laws (NY).

Find out if any local college or university has access to Lexis Nexis Legal, if so search away, you may find some decent case law that could help... pacing... speedometer calibration, etc.

As I said that I fought the tickets in court, you defintely have to man up for that as a pro-se (representing yourself defendant). You definitely shouldn't spend money on lawyer, unless you are terrified of authority and can't string two sentences together in front of an audience.

Moving on, just so you know... in court... it doesn't matter what actually happened at the scene of the ticket... the only thing that matters is what you (or they) can prove in court. Also it means that you can't attack the testimony of the cop... you need to attack the credibilty of the witness (LEO).

This isn't hard... actually it's quite enjoyable, both my cops nearly lost their tempers with my line of questioning.

Speaking of questioning... there lots of resources of what questions to ask, (seek and ye shall find)... always good to go after their training, you know more about pacing then they do and whack them over the head with that knowledge, like calibration records, traffic survey, visual estimation. (In NY a cop can testify that he estimated your speed and that's enough to get you convicted, radar is optional.)

Also get as many continuances (re-schedules) for your trial date as possible, this screws around with the court's calendar and increases the chance that the LEO doesn't show where u then win by default. (Didn't help me, but I was ready nonetheless.)

Wear a decent fitted suit and don't rail about the injustice of LEOs going after otherwise law-abiding people... Remember you're there to argue about the law... this isn't congress where you get on your soapbox.

Another thing I learned is that courts hate people who fight their tickets, since they screw up their system. This works in your favor... if you are taking up a lot of court time with your... case as you should the judge will eventually do almost anything to get you out of there and stop wasting their time. .ie "persuading" the ADA to give you a very good plea bargain (my favorite, non-moving violation, no points... like low tread or blown tailight)...

Anyway good luck, hope that helped a little.
Link Posted: 10/9/2007 5:16:58 PM EST

Originally Posted By Freakinout:

Originally Posted By OLY-M4gery:

Funny thing on a motorcycle if you don't hit the ground with your feet, you haven't stopped.


That's funny... I can stop (no forward or rearward momentum) for 3-4 seconds on my motorcycle.


Same here. I get funny looks sometimes because of it, but it works.

Link Posted: 10/9/2007 8:11:09 PM EST
Check out the ticket carefully and look up the actual citations on the ticket. I won a case of alleged driving without insurance because the cop wrote "insurance liability violation" on the ticket. That was the title of the code section not the actual code I violated.

Was almost cited for contempt as I couldn't control my laughter in the court.
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