Advice before my court appointment tomorrow morning?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Scott Wong, Feb 14, 2005.

  1. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    I did a search but didn't find anything this specific.

    I am scheduled to appear in court tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m. because of a speeding ticket I am contesting.

    I was clocked three weeks ago by an officer claiming I was doing 82 mph in a 55 mph zone. He 'did me a favor' by writing the citation for doing 79 mph in a 55 mph zone. Here in Minnesota, they are not required by law to show you the radar/laser printout even if asked. And I asked and he flat out denied showing me the information. I still don't believe I was doing 79 mph and certainly not 82 mph on the morning I was pulled over. he also checked the box marked 'careless driving' which increases the amount of the fine in Minnesota by $10.00

    So... I set up the court appointment with hopes of obtaining a continuance of dismissal. I cannot afford to have this ticket on my record. I'm obviously willing to take a defensive driving class, be placed on probation, if necessary and pay the court costs... but I simply cannot afford to have it be shows on my record.

    Two weeks later after returning home from a crappy weekend while vacationing in Houston, I obtained a second speeding citation. This time written for doing 69 mph in a 50 mph zone. I knew I was speeding this time. After begging and pleading for a warning... and even being honest about the first citation issued two weeks prior, he still gave me the ticket. Granted, it's my own fault.

    This entire month... no wait, the last few months have absolutely sucked for me. I guess I don't want to get into all kinds of gory details... but I just haven't been myself lately. It just seems like I've been having the worst luck with everything in my life right now and NOTHING has gone right since this past December. These two speeding tickets are the icing on the cake for me.

    I know I have to kiss the DA's ass tomorrow. I am assuming I should mention to them the second ticket I obtained last week, right?? I would assume they would want to know about both of them. I want to contest both of them, but it would seem my getting a continuance of dismissal would be slim to none. For what it is worth, my brother is a CSO at a local police department. He checked my driving record a couple of nights ago, and aside from these two speeding citations in a span of less than three weeks... my last citation was issued in March 1995... nearly ten years ago. My record was spotless up until these two speeding citations.

    Anyone have any tips or tricks on what I can do to convince the prosecutor to let me off easy?? I know they don't want it to go in front of a judge either because it costs them money. If anything, they would like it settled by the DA... or so I have heard.

    Help??
     
  2. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    normally, you may be able to plead your case, but you got *another* ticket within a couple of weeks. any judge who sees that isn't going to be too lenient.

    the best thing you can do is simply plead your first case. admit that you were speeding on the second citation, etc.

    then just bow down before the judge, and pray for the best.
     
  3. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

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    This court appearance is for the first ticket only, right? If so, don't mention the second, unless the judge does first. It has no bearing on your first ticket.
     
  4. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    I don't have much advice other than just make a fool of your self begging. You have nothing to lose. Even if you have to pay, find out what you can do to keep it off your record. Keep a sense of humor and be good natured.

    Here's a little story to make you feel better about your situation.

    One summer I broke my leg, I had to quit work and sit in an apartment for the whole summer. I was hating life before this pretty much. I finally got to where I could hobble around and so I thought I'd drive to the coast (1 1/2 hours away) to get some perspective and so soul searching. On the way I got pulled over doing 72 in a 55. Got a ticket, but the cop did say I was the nicest person he's ever pulled over and that he would put that on the ticket and the judge would notice. (bulls$%). 5 minutes later I got pulled over again doing 73 in the same 55. Like I told the first cop, I told this cop, that I was just passing people and hadn't gotten back down to speed, (winding road with seldom passing lanes) and that I had just gotten a ticket and was not trying to be reckless. He said ok, but here's your ticket also saying that I was very nice and had a good attitude. Needless to say I had $700.00 in tickets to pay. I didn't bother fighting them, but they did get reduced. Needless to say I had the cashier and the people in the waiting room laughing at me.
    Plus I also learned that no matter how nice you are to cops they are still gonna give you the shaft depending on their mood. They're a joke.

    Hope that makes you feel better and good luck.
     
  5. Mort Corey

    Mort Corey Supporting Actor

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    The officer that gave you the radar citation might be required to show that the gun was calibrated recently. If it hasn't, you could argue that it was not properly adjusted and was mistaken. I agree though, no point in mentioning that you are a habitual criminal unless you're asked [​IMG]

    Mort
     
  6. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    But... I want both of them off my record. I know my court appointment just states I am there for the one citation... but it doesn't make sense not to mention the 2nd citation, as well.

    For instance, what if I am just given a continuance of dismissal for the first ticket? The DA says I can walk and he'll toss out the first ticket and put me on probation for a couple of years. But typically, that means if you get another citation, they will reinstate the original ticket and sock you for the 2nd one you 'promised' not to get for 1 or 2 years depending upon the length of your probation term. At least, that's the way my brother explained it to me. So what happens if I get the dismissal for the first one and then fight the second one as well? Aren't they gonna be, like, "Well, you failed to mention the second ticket at the time you took care of the first one.... now you're going to be penalized for the most recent one as well as reinstating the original citation you came to court for the first time!!"

    For some reason, my gut instinct is advising me to be open and honest and hope for the best. Failing to tell them about the 2nd citation is only going to make it difficult when it comes time for me to try and fight that one. I think I'd definitely be in a losing battle at that point.
     
  7. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    One thing that always amazes me is that people show up to court for tickets in t-shirts and shorts or jeans. Do yourself a favor and put on a tie and sports coat. Will it help? Maybe. But it definitely won't hurt.
     
  8. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    *nod*

    I've got the nice clothes pressed and cleaned for tomorrow morning.
     
  9. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    agreed. this stuff always comes out sooner or later....
     
  10. Ron-P

    Ron-P Producer

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    They're not a joke, they're doing their job. You were speeding (regardless of your excuse) and they caught you.

    I got caught doing 92 in a 65. I was very polite and nice to the officer and he reduced the speed on the ticket to 79 so I could go to traffic school and it would not end up on my record.
     
  11. Elinor

    Elinor Supporting Actor

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    >"This entire month... no wait, the last few months have absolutely sucked for me. I guess I don't want to get into all kinds of gory details... but I just haven't been myself lately. It just seems like I've been having the worst luck with everything in my life right now and NOTHING has gone right since this past December. These two speeding tickets are the icing on the cake for me."

    Scott. Buddy. Two speeding tickets in a brief time is not bad luck. It is ... how can I say this nicely ... really stupid. Bad luck is when the universe does something undeserved. Speeding is a voluntary action.

    You need to slow down pal. All you do is endanger other people by your impatience.

    Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.
     
  12. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    My advice: Take the brick out of your sock.
     
  13. Micheal

    Micheal Screenwriter

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    I agree.

    Sorry Scott. I don't even see why you deserve to have these removed? One... maybe, but not two within a few weeks.

    You would think that you would have learned your lesson.

    PS- I'm not perfect. I have received speeding tickets in the past. Still, I deserved them.
     
  14. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Guy asked for practical advice, not preaching. Good grief.

    --
    H
     
  15. Nathan*W

    Nathan*W Screenwriter

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    There are no "tips" or "tricks" to get out of a ticket.

    Go in, apologize, take your lumps, and adjust your driving habits so it doesn't happen again.

    [EDIT] If that's preachin' then all I've got to say is "AMEN!"
     
  16. Micheal

    Micheal Screenwriter

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    Hallelujah![​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    Scott you need get yourself a lawyer in order to get yourself the best chance of not having either ticket on your record.

    You are getting a lot of advice here, but we can’t even agree as to whether you should mention your second ticket during your first appearance.

    Your very best chance is to get a lawyer who specializes in this kind of problem.

    And take the advice on showing up in a coat and tie.
     
  18. Rob Gardiner

    Rob Gardiner Cinematographer

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    And get a haircut, you hippie. [​IMG]
     
  19. Peter Kim

    Peter Kim Screenwriter

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  20. Nathan*W

    Nathan*W Screenwriter

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    Excerpt from Peter's article: So it looks like you're not eligible.

    Also from the article: any further infractions (such as the one you're already gotten) would mean the court would report both violations to your insurance, which negates the whole purpose of a continuance for dismissal.
     

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