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(The Iowa Channel.com)   Kansas professor spends $1000 contesting a $45 speeding ticket   ( theiowachannel.com) divider line
    More: Dumbass  
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11795 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Jul 2005 at 9:13 PM (12 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



113 Comments     (+0 »)
 


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2005-07-12 01:42:02 PM  
Dumbass? Can I get a hero tag in here please?
 
2005-07-12 01:45:44 PM  
submitter must not pay his own car insurance.
 
2005-07-12 02:08:07 PM  
He's fightin' the "man," so I'd give him the hero tag.
 
2005-07-12 02:21:25 PM  
You know, if he had paypal, I'd send him $10.
 
2005-07-12 02:27:25 PM  
Sometimes you do things on principle.

I got a ticket last night, first in nearly 6 years. Told the officer I believed he was mistaken because the light was yellow when I went through it. "Were we looking at the same light?" he asked me. "I guess we were, but I know I'd never run a red light." "Have you ever sped?"

What the fark does that have to do with this red light? Have you ever sped, officer? Therefore, does that inhibit your ability to judge my red light running? I mean, your implication was just as relevant as my own asinine statement. (This last paragraph was in my head, the last thing I needed was more stuff tacked on)

When I proceeded to ask him if he had followed me off the exit because I knew I hadn't run a red light, "Are you saying I'm lying? I mean, that's like calling me a liar." What an asshole. All he needed to say was "Sorry sir, that's what I observed" and we could have agreed to disagree. I mean, if you want to get technical, he was basically calling me a liar as well. But I know how it works, a defendent's testimony doesn't carry as much weight as an officer's in court, so I'll just eat it and go to traffic school.

Anyone know how much you can say back to an officer before you get into trouble? I mean, the way he was talking down to me, he was basically talking shiat. There were a few things I wanted to say, but was worried about the consequences. This was all in a BK parking lot, so I don't think I would have been Rodney King'ed.

/vent
 
2005-07-12 02:31:51 PM  
Visualingo:

Told the officer I believed he was mistaken because the light was yellow when I went through it.

I bet these cops got SCMODS.

/State County Municipal Offender Data System.
 
2005-07-12 02:37:11 PM  
Visualingo: Anyone know how much you can say back to an officer before you get into trouble? I mean, the way he was talking down to me, he was basically talking shiat.

I wonder about that too. I would think you could say anything you wanted as long as it wasn't threatening or insulting.
 
2005-07-12 02:38:38 PM  
untrustworthy:

I would think you could say anything you wanted as long as it wasn't threatening or insulting.

I'm not sure about insulting. It may not be the best idea, but I don't think it's against the law to insult a cop.
 
2005-07-12 02:38:52 PM  
Last ticket I got, I fought it and won.

The fine for the ticket would have been $328 if I just paid it. (it would NOT have affected my insurance)

I figure I spent about $1200 to beat it, considering the days off of work I had to take (didn't need a lawyer).

/Still not sure if it was worth it
 
2005-07-12 02:44:01 PM  
I would think you could say anything you wanted as long as it wasn't threatening or insulting.

The thing about it, I was completely polite and wasn't argumentative. I just said that I thought he was mistaken. "Are you calling me a liar?" I thought that his response was a bit much for the situation. Even after that I said, "No, I'm just saying I think you were mistaken."

I have no problems with cops. There are good cops and bad cops. Most are doing their duty and I can only imagine the danger they put themselves through and what life would be life without them. That said, there's no reason to be a dick.
 
2005-07-12 02:46:48 PM  
I have a standard policy of never argue with a police officer in situ.

When a cop pulls you over - he has all the power, absolute control, and his word will be taken over yours in the event of a dispute.

If you want to fight it - recieve the ticket and dispute it from there. You might end up paying a few more tickets, but you're alot less likely to find out that your taillight is broken, or that you were driving with a broken nose and in addition to being hospitalised - you're being cited for dangerous driving because you continued to drive while impaired by your injury.
 
2005-07-12 02:54:36 PM  
Visualingo: That said, there's no reason to be a dick.

Agreed. I don't know if cops are trained to act like pricks (would it help them control a situation any more than if they were nice?) but it sure seems like most of them gain that mentality when they put on a badge and a gun. I have a friend who I've known since I was in Jr. High who is now in the border patrol, and when he goes to work he tends to try to intimidate, insult, and belittle the illegal immigrants he has to detain and transport. I don't really understand why he does this, except for maybe he feels like a badass afterwords. Kinda makes me sick.

I think cops could do a lot more good by treating people with more respect. They would probably get more cooperation and respect back if they adopted a friendlier attitude.

/Protect and Serve, not belittle and intimidate.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2005-07-12 02:59:23 PM  
He'll probably lose because courts hate to undermine the revenue potential of the system. Imagine if "the radar is probably right" were not good enough. You'd have people coming to court and saying they didn't do it. Some of them might even be acquitted, denying the state and city valuable revenue. One technique used in other states is to say that no matter how unreliable the radar may be as long as the officer testified to a visual speed estimate the conviction will be upheld. They will usually zap first and estimate the speed to be exactly what showed up on the display but only a foolish cop admits doing that.

(The Montana Supreme Court overturned the state's speed law because they knew it would be quickly replaced with one that promised an increased citation and conviction rate.)
 
2005-07-12 03:07:59 PM  
ZAZ: (The Montana Supreme Court overturned the state's speed law because they knew it would be quickly replaced with one that promised an increased citation and conviction rate.)

The Montana Supreme Court overturned the speed law because it was getting the state bad press and the roads were being abused by out-of-staters who wrongly believed Montana had no speed limit. Revenue had little to do with it because for decades prior, Montana was forced to ticket speeders by the federal government, and their silent protest against this was to only charge them $5. It cost more to process the ticket than they got from the speeder.
 
2005-07-12 03:10:14 PM  
One technique used in other states is to say that no matter how unreliable the radar may be as long as the officer testified to a visual speed estimate the conviction will be upheld.

I thought I heard that in California, if they hit you with radar, they have to be ready to show you the radar or they can't ticket you. Any truth to this?
 
2005-07-12 03:16:22 PM  
untrustworthy:

I think cops could do a lot more good by treating people with more respect. They would probably get more cooperation and respect back if they adopted a friendlier attitude.

/Protect and Serve, not belittle and intimidate.


So true. I'm am the easiest guy to pull over. I turn the interior lights on if its dark, kill the engine, find a place at least off the road if it isnt safe to pull over on the road, etc. I'm a surburban white guy. I know the risks a cop has walking up to a car, I try to make it easier for him/her. After all that and the cop just lays it on to be a dick really does not help the process.

That's when I lawyer up and thrash the cop.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2005-07-12 03:18:34 PM  
Revenue had little to do with it because for decades prior, Montana was forced to ticket speeders by the federal government, and their silent protest against this was to only charge them $5. It cost more to process the ticket than they got from the speeder.

They changed the law to have a real speed limit and a real fine. Lots more revenue coming in at $75 per ticket than $5, and more tickets too. (And more people dying, because speed limits on rural Interstates don't help safety.)

I thought I heard that in California, if they hit you with radar, they have to be ready to show you the radar or they can't ticket you. Any truth to this?

"Police have to show you the radar" is a common rumor but I've never seen a law that says so.

(I can list two exceptions to the general rule I stated earlier: if you're in Nebraska or Pennsylvania the police can't just guess your speed, they have to measure it. If they don't have a radar reading they can charge "too fast for conditions" but they can't charge "exceeding the speed limit.")
 
2005-07-12 03:31:18 PM  
For future reference (made for Cali drivers, don't know if it applies across the board)
 
2005-07-12 03:33:29 PM  
What the hell was that?

www.ticketassassin.com is the website I'm referring to. I have no idea what Fark did.
 
2005-07-12 04:18:57 PM  
[image from holtzbrinckpublishers.com too old to be available]
/obvious
 
2005-07-12 05:32:18 PM  
[image from 24.249.98.5 too old to be available]

The only way to get any sanity into the system is to forbid any city/state from keeping the money it collects from traffic tickets. Or any fines, for that matter.

We would find out in a real hurry which laws were being enforced for public saftey.

Also, in a sane system, this guy would get a full refund of his expenses (including lost wages, if any) if found not guilty.

I mean, if he isn't guilty, WHY should he be out the money defending himself? Dosen't seem right to me.

One more thing: Force the cops to carry an active mini-videocam with mic clipped to their shirt pocket whenever they're on duty. Make the video available to anybody cited/arrested upon request. If there's a dispute about who to believe, the judge can simply "go to the video." The cameras/mics in the cop cars make a HUGE difference, but it's just not enough.


/never happen, though. Makes too much sense.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2005-07-12 05:42:48 PM  
Force the cops to carry an active mini-videocam with mic clipped to their shirt pocket whenever they're on duty

Some agencies are equipping patrol cars with video that is activated whenever the lights are on, if not all the time. The problem is what comes next. A lot of the time they erase the tape immediately unless they have reason to believe it will help them. DUI arrest where the guy is falling-down drunk -- tape goes into evidence. Speeding ticket where the cop wants to lie about tracking history -- tape goes out in a new car the next day.
 
2005-07-12 07:49:58 PM  
It's the prinicple of the matter!
 
2005-07-12 09:18:38 PM  
Think your local municipality is using speeding tickets as a revenue raiser ? Then here's one way to fight the MAN !
 
2005-07-12 09:19:07 PM  
If it could be proved that the car was equipped with the recording device, and the tape got "lost", wouldn't any judge throw out the charge for lack of evidence? (Lack of evidence being evidence in itself of something)
 
2005-07-12 09:22:47 PM  
What pshaw said.
 
2005-07-12 09:23:34 PM  
Visualingo:

I thought I heard that in California, if they hit you with radar, they have to be ready to show you the radar or they can't ticket you. Any truth to this?

Everytime I have gotten a ticket, I saw the radar. This is in Ohio, but there seems to be a claim of truth to it.

After I got my last ticket, I asked the officer how the radar gun worked. He showed me and let me "shoot" a couple of cars. After we were done, I let him know I planned on fighting the ticket. He was cool about it and wished me luck. I went to the courthouse, and the officer never showed up. The ticket was dismissed.

When I left the courtroom, the officer was in the hall. I smiled and told him he was late. He told me that he had been late on purpose because I was so polite.

He could have been BSing me, I don't know.
 
2005-07-12 09:23:34 PM  
Riche:

Force the cops to carry an active mini-videocam with mic clipped to their shirt pocket whenever they're on duty.


I love it. "They have nothing to fear if they are doing nothing wrong! Only criminals have something to hide!"

/or something like that
 
2005-07-12 09:23:53 PM  
Your local police force and state legislature doesn't give the slightest fark about your safety or the safety of others. Traffic tickets are for the sole purpose of revenue generation only. If everyone obeyed the speed limit then your city would go even more broke than it already is and they would find a way to add restrictions to or totally outlaw some other normal activity in order to make up the deficit.
 
2005-07-12 09:25:07 PM  
The posterity of this case is overwhelming!

The professor's name will live on forev... err, what's his name?

Attention whore.
 
2005-07-12 09:25:47 PM  
people, people...the man is from Kansas, therefore "dumbass" is the default tag. stupid beaker.


/Go Tigers!
 
2005-07-12 09:26:18 PM  
Let me guess. This guy never got spanked by his mommie.

Jeebus folks, you ran a red light. Just pay the frigging fine and be on your way.

This sort of thing always pisses me off. Someone was going 85 in a 65 zone. "I'll fight this because the Man is after me because insert stupid reason here". Umm, no. The man is after you because you were breaking the law.

I've been pulled over two times by "the man" and guess what? Both times, I was doing something I wasn't supposed to be doing.

Wise up you dumb shiats. Don't break the law or give johnny law reason to pull you over and you'll be OK.

It's not that hard.
 
2005-07-12 09:27:02 PM  
Riche:

I've said the same thing before. The town I work in ran out of money in the budget a couple years ago and I found out from someone that works in city hall that the police there were ordered to go out and make some money.

It's just an underhanded way to tax people without being accountable for it come election time.
 
2005-07-12 09:28:22 PM  
Shiat.... he didn't run the red Visualingo did.

Still. My comment stands. Don't set yourself up. And it'll be OK
 
2005-07-12 09:33:20 PM  
Pokey_Underwood:

That makes sense until you get a gun pressed against the back of your head and get told that the cop is going to "blow your farking head off" because you walked across the parking lot to your car after getting off work. Of course there was no explanation of why I was stopped or even any indication of what they thought I did wrong. After a search of me and my car, they let me go and told me not to walk suspiciously.

It's not that hard to be stopped for doing nothing.
 
2005-07-12 09:34:52 PM  
Visualingo: The less you say the better. Don't agree to speeding; don't agree that you committed the infraction, but SHUT THE FARK UP QUICK, take the ticket, and call your lawyer if you want to fight it. (If the lawyer has to go to court, its around $1000. weigh that vs. getting points. $1000 can be pretty cheap in comparison)

As for how much you can say before getting "are you calling me a liar?" Not much. It also doesn't take much for them to pull a "are you resisting me?" routine either.

Don't fight the cop; fight it in court.
 
2005-07-12 09:37:15 PM  
untrustworthy:

Agreed. I don't know if cops are trained to act like pricks (would it help them control a situation any more than if they were nice?) but it sure seems like most of them gain that mentality when they put on a badge and a gun. I have a friend who I've known since I was in Jr. High who is now in the border patrol, and when he goes to work he tends to try to intimidate, insult, and belittle the illegal immigrants he has to detain and transport. I don't really understand why he does this, except for maybe he feels like a badass afterwords. Kinda makes me sick.

I think cops could do a lot more good by treating people with more respect. They would probably get more cooperation and respect back if they adopted a friendlier attitude.

/Protect and Serve, not belittle and intimidate.



There was a very interesting and contraversial study conducted in the early 70s on the effects of a person's immediate environment and their decisions and actions. It might help explain why your friend acts the way he does. Zimbardo Prison Experiment
 
2005-07-12 09:37:29 PM  
what mekkab said. you don't have any rights until you get to court. Be nice and take the ticket and be glad to get away in one piece.
 
2005-07-12 09:37:56 PM  
Insurance premiums would be over $1k in NJ
 
2005-07-12 09:38:05 PM  
If there are injustices in the traffic court system, they likely just go by. The system is set up to make it easier to give in than fight. Even if you are innocent, it's cheaper to just pay the fine. The system is unlikely to differentiate between innocent and guilty in such circumstances.
 
2005-07-12 09:39:59 PM  
[image from slowpencil.net too old to be available]

/lives in Kansas
//it's not that bad. mmmm... bbq
 
2005-07-12 09:41:46 PM  
Listen everyone when you get pulled over first thing you
should say is "Your not gonna look in the trunk are ya?"

/puts the police right at ease.
//police like slasheys to
///
 
2005-07-12 09:42:42 PM  
I know a guy with something called legal insurance. Basically, he pays money every month to a company, and if he has some small crap like this, he can use a lawyer. I think.

/Also know that it is better to get a roth IRA
 
2005-07-12 09:44:21 PM  
Argue with a cop and you risk him throwing a little baggie of pot in your car and then "discovering" it on you. Police have you by the balls and their testimony is always given more credit than yours. Just shut up give him what he wants and hope he doesn't abuse your rights too much.
 
2005-07-12 09:45:44 PM  
Pokey_Underwood

Oh wow! You have first hand knowledge of what happened - that he was, in fact, speeding. You better call him and his local court to let them know exactly what happened. You could save them all a lot of time and money.

Was this a fluke instance, or do you magically aquire knowledge like this on a regular basis? If you do know everything, which I think it is safe to say you do, I nominate you for neo-Jesus.
 
2005-07-12 09:48:09 PM  
The police do not own the law, but are only paid to uphold it.
 
2005-07-12 09:48:59 PM  
[image from cataland.com too old to be available]

Santa Cruz. I'm riding on the highway and there is alot of traffic but we are all going around 50 MPH. Suddenly this black Mustang speeds up behind me and gets a few inches from my ass.

(I did not know it was a trooper)

So I tap my brakes a tiny bit to send the message to get off my ass!

I had 2 passengers in the car also.

Lights come on and I pull over.

I get out and he asks me why I hit my breaks.

My exact words were, "I am so sorry sir, I had no idea you were a police officer... I just thought you were some asshole dangerously tailgating me in heavy traffic.".

He scratched his head and let me go. Lucky!
 
2005-07-12 09:53:27 PM  
I was in an accident earlier this year. Basically, I was in the slow lane, making a lane change to the faster moving middle lane. As I was performing my lane change, I was speeding up to mesh with the faster flowing traffic in the new lane. An accident then occured in the new lane, and traffic immediately stopped. I slammed on the brakes, but I still bumped into the car in front of me.

I explained to the cop what had happened, and he asked me how fast I was going. I told him I didn't really know. He became more insistent, and I again told him I didn't know how to judge how fast I might have been going. He began to get irritated and asked me if I was going 100mph? I said 'no' and he said, "Then you can judge how fast you were going. How fast was it?" I told him "I don't really know ... ummm, 15mph ... maybe?" He took that answer and walked away.

10 minutes later, he returned with a ticket for me to sign. It was for going 15mph over the speed limit, when the "safe speed" was 0mph.

I was shocked that he would do something so crass. 0mph is the SAFE SPEED when traffic moving in the lane was at least 40mph?

I decided to fight the ticket, but didn't bother with taking a day off from work. I documented the entire event as best I could, and initiated a Trial by Mail. In my opinion, this case was so incredibly stupid that I shouldn't even have to appear in person to defend myself.

Despite the usual reasons for revenue generation, the court saw it my way and dismissed the ticket. My total cost is a 37 cent stamp, and maybe an hour of my time. That doesn't count the stress and frustration of being involved in an accident that wasn't my fault, and then getting a bogus ticket on top of that. I wonder if the cop got any sort of reprimand for writing such an obviously ludicrous ticket.

So I now have an accident on my record ... but the damages were so slight, it doesn't appear to have affected my insurance rates. Weird, but I ain't gonna complain. If they added in the ticket, though, I'm pretty sure that it would have.
 
M-G
2005-07-12 09:56:14 PM  
ZAZ:

Some agencies are equipping patrol cars with video that is activated whenever the lights are on, if not all the time. The problem is what comes next. A lot of the time they erase the tape immediately unless they have reason to believe it will help them. DUI arrest where the guy is falling-down drunk -- tape goes into evidence. Speeding ticket where the cop wants to lie about tracking history -- tape goes out in a new car the next day.

But those tapes are also the good cop's best friend. One cop I know also uses a small tape recorder for any interactions while on duty. That way when someone tried to fight back by claiming he was impolite, sexually harassing, or whatever, he can simply provide his audio tape.
 
2005-07-12 09:57:30 PM  
GhostFish:

Living in Orlando, Florida for 6 years I have never once seen a cop that wasn't speeding.

I often see the opposite. The police go 55 in a 65 zone. Then, all of the cars are afraid to pass the officer. Traffic gets tied up. I assume the cop is laughing in the car, but I have never been able to get close enough to see.
 
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