The Lounge
Moderators: nomoreexcuses, spoiled_candy, Mollybygolly, peaches0405


Need HELP! Going to court for speeding ticket...


Quote  |  Reply

So I got a speeding ticket about a month and half ago. I was going 55mph in a 40mph zone. I went to the court date on the ticket and requested a trial. And I have to be in court later today. I thought that it would be fairly easy to get the charge dismissed. But now I am freaking out! I have never been to court before. I don't know how it works. I don't know what I'm supposed to do/say or more importantly what not to do/say. Is there even a chance that it will be dismissed?? I know the officer is also supposed to show up and that if he doesn't it may very well be dismissed. Is it likely that the officer will show up? The reason I went this route was because I really have no extra money to pay this fine or go to driving school. The fine is $270 and if I went to driving school it would still cost me a minimum of $150. I don't have that in my budget so I figured I may as well try and fight it and if I lose, at least I had more time to maybe come up with the money. At this point, if I have to pay it, I'm not going to be able to pay a bill. 

If anyone has any advice for me I'd really appreciate it! I'm having some major anxiety over this right now, and I'm so afraid to go to court. The first time I went just to request the trial I almost passed out from the anxiety and that was the easy part! I would feel better though if I knew what I was walking into and what I'm supposed to do/say.

 

50 Replies (last)

lol, im going to court on wed too excpet i was going 81mph in a 55, yeaaa

Your best chance is that the officer won't show up.

Sorry, but preparing at the last minute is not going to do you any good.  Had you asked when you first got the ticket, I could give you lots of helpful advice about how to subpoena the radar maintenance logs and instructions and how to cross-examine the cop.  Speeding tickets can be killed 99% of the time on technical reasons, but not if you don't know what you're doing.

If the officer shows, your next best hope is to ask the judge to reduce the ticket.

Original Post by anon1388:

If anyone has any advice for me I'd really appreciate it!

Don't break the law and you won't have to worry about stuff like this.

 

If you're in NY and were issued the ticket by a State Trooper, the chances are now high that the State Trooper will show up at trial.  Wasn't always the case; changed with legislation within the past year or two.

#5  
Quote  |  Reply

lysistrata- I know I'm such a procrastinator! I did read about it though and saw that you could subpoena the radar maintenance. But I didn't feel that would be worth it. If the officer does show, how do I go about asking for the ticket to be reduced? Do I just give my reason and ask straight out??

I got a ticket for going 70 in a 45...thing is, I was going more like 75 and that would have been criminal speeding in my neck of the woods Undecided so the cop was already giving me a break.  I didn't take it to court because 1. I'm lazy and 2. I felt like I deserved it...

you got caught speeding.  suck it up and pay the fine.

Original Post by anon1388:

lysistrata- I know I'm such a procrastinator! I did read about it though and saw that you could subpoena the radar maintenance. But I didn't feel that would be worth it. If the officer does show, how do I go about asking for the ticket to be reduced? Do I just give my reason and ask straight out??

In my experience, the prosecutor will meet with you for a settlement conference.  They review your record and will bring the ticket down to something else based upon the review, if warranted.

It would help to know what state you're in.

Quite interesting that you've only posted a handful of posts and this is the topic you've posted...a weight loss website?  Interesting strategy.

Is the judge a man or a woman?

If the officer doesn't show up, at least in WI, the charge is usually dismissed.  However, chances of the officer not showing up are pretty slim.

Why do you think the charge should be dismissed?  Unfortunately, "I can't pay the fine" isn't going to be enough, though they may lower it at least.  Do you have an actual argument as to why the ticket shouldn't have been issued, or why you shouldn't have to pay it?  For example, were you in sight of a sign that said "55 mph"?  One of my friends had a situation like that and she ended up getting the charge dropped because she was on a 40mph stretch of road, but within a quarter mile of a sign that did, in fact, raise the speed limit to 55.  Was the 40 mph sign obstructed in some way so you couldn't see it?  That also might work as a defense.

Without the radar information, you are stuck in the position that the measurement is presumed to be accurate.  It doesn't matter what you say, the judge is going to believe the radar, not you.

Tickets are successfully beaten when you can show the measurement isn't accurate.  That's it.  And you can't do that without understanding the machine, how it measures speed, and what steps need to be taken to ensure it is correctly operated and maintained.

So, again, if the cop shows up, you're pretty much dead in the water (imho).  I don't see any reason to waste the judge's time with excuses, it'll just piss him/her off.  My advice is to just explain that you can't afford to pay the ticket and ask for it to be reduced.

Number one thing... be honest with the judge. They hear B.S. excuses ALL DAY LONG and the last thing they want to hear is your piss whining and your excuses.

Just be frank... Yes, I was speeding. Although, you will see from my clean driving record, that this is a rare occurrence and I will be certain it won't happen again.

Just plead guilty w/explanation (aka, that you know you were speeding and you're sorry).

Ask for the court's mercy when deciding your judgment.

 

ETA: My FIL is a retired police officer and now works as a Bailiff. He said that seriously the WORST thing you can do for a speeding ticket and try and BS the judge. They hear lame stories ALL DAY.

 

If your court is anything like my traffic court, and it is your first ticket, you can plea "No contest" or guilty and request that since it is your first speeding ticket that you get a no point charge for your ticket.

Unfortunately, in my court fees are due the day of the trial.

Your only hope is that your officer doesn't show up, because odds are that you will get charged guilty (especially since you aren't saying you aren't guilty).

The judge in our court usually reduces the fee a little for no contest pleas, but you kinda wasted time by not pleading no contest in the first place and requesting a trial.

so im going on Wed and its my FIRST speeding ticken, i have a huge fine plus lots of points but i am pleading guilty. if i just have to pay thatd be great!

What does "no contest" mean?

 

No contest means that you don't refute the charge against you. You're not admitting guilt, but you're not saying you aren't 'not-guilty', either.

Just plead guilty.

It's hard to plead "not guilty" or "no contest" on a speeding ticket.

thank u, i was going 81 in a 55, ugh, just dont want the points!!!

Original Post by anon1388:

lysistrata- I know I'm such a procrastinator! I did read about it though and saw that you could subpoena the radar maintenance. But I didn't feel that would be worth it. If the officer does show, how do I go about asking for the ticket to be reduced? Do I just give my reason and ask straight out??

If your reason is anything other than that you were actually going 40 mph then you are wasting everybody's time.

Original Post by agruskin:

thank u, i was going 81 in a 55, ugh, just dont want the points!!!

My FIL says that most of the judges he sees in court don't give anyone a break for going over 80 mph. Just plead guilty. You said this is your first ticket... make sure you bring up that your record is clean prior to this.

Good luck.

I once got a speeding ticket for going 80 in a 65. I was able to double the fine and have the charge reduced to a non-moving violation while pleading no contest. It required me to go to court and speak to the judge and prosecutor.

When you speak to them, just tell them that you literally cannot afford to pay it all in one chunk. They may be able to offer you alternative payment terms.

im going to court bc i requested a trial.  i dont care if i need to pay, im more owrried about fines+insurance going up.

yes, its my 1st speeding ticket but now im unsure if i should plead guilty or no contest?

50 Replies (last)
Advertisement
Advertisement