I read a short article this morning on the Tampa Tribune website. It posed the question of whether “there is some sort of technique to getting out of traffic citations.”
It caught my eye because it hit on a point I’ve been trying to make for years. Everyone wants to know if “I can say this or do this or use this defense or if officers are like this or that”… These questions are with respect to both before and after a ticket is issued.
People want black/white solutions to their problems, but such solutions rarely exist. My answers are almost always “maybe, it depends, could be, etc.”… One officer pulls you over and is in a good mood and gives you a warning, another pulls you over 2 minutes after getting into a fight with his wife on the phone. One judge buys your story about why you were talking on a cell phone while another judge’s aunt was just hit by a driver who was talking on the phone two days prior to your hearing.
Bottom line is, when a person has the power to use discretion–as officers who pull you over do–it is impossible to set rules to how that discretion will be exercised. Different people see things differently. Thus, there never will be one “technique” that works all the time.
Related to this are all the “one size fits all” BS beating traffic ticket books and “secrets” and websites out there. The thought that there are universal solutions that don’t take into account different personalities, different jurisdictions within a state and even different laws and evidence as you go from state to state is absolutely ridiculous. Within NY alone there are 2 “types” of courts that are so different from each other it’s obvious universal solutions or tricks just don’t exist.
All this doesn’t mean how you are treated or whether you are successful before or after you are issued a ticket is completely random or out of your hands. Courtesy on the road increases your chances of getting a warning and and smart strategy based on the applicable local rules and procedures in court will increase your chances of success. However, don’t waste too much time searching for some “magic bullet”. It’s unlikely you’ll find it.
The original article written by Jessica Balanza can be found here: Do you have a foolproof way of avoiding speeding tickets?