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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Default Reasons for Dismissal of a Speeding Ticket

    My question involves a speeding ticket from the State of: Pennsylvania

    2 months ago I was cited for 54 mph in a 40 mph zone. I pled not guilty and had my hearing today. I accepted 5 miles over with 0 points, BUT they still get most of my money. I think I could have fought it more, but was not prepared and would like some answers that may help me and others in the future.

    Neither the officers who "clocked" me, nor the officer who wrote the ticket were in court. Another officer from the issuing township was present. I was called in by him and he stated "I am not the officer who clocked you or wrote the ticket, I am here to represent them. I am prepared to offer "5 miles over with 0 points" if that is not satisfactory to you I will request a continuance.

    Question #1: Could it have been thrown out because the two officers were not present or was he correct that he could request a continuance as their representative? I was always under the impression that the officer had to show up to the hearing or the judge would throw the ticket out.

    When the judge came in he stated that I was there for 68 mph in a 40 mph and that the officer was graciously offering 0 points and 5 mph over and did I want to accept the deal? I did state that I was told by the officer issuing the ticket that I was ticketed for 54 mph in a 40 mph and the judge replied "they are offering you 5 over & 0 points; 54 mphor 68 impht still is the same points, did you bring your ticket with you?" When I got home I looked and although it is hard to read it does say 54mph.

    #2 Could I have fought it based onthe bad information that the judge had?

    The ticket only states "clocked" there is no information about how I was clocked; what instruments were used or how the calculations were determined.

    #3 Is this information required
    #4 Could I and should I have requested this information ahead of time?

    #5 And lastly, my driver's license was ALSO recorded incorrectly on the ticket. Could I have fought the ticket based on that?

    I am angry and feel intimidated/bullied by the officer and judge. I felt that if I argued anything they would be tough on me; so I said nothing except to correct the speed that I was cited for going. I will use this experience to learn from and will be more prepared in the future. And the answers to the questions above will help me.

    Thank You

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    1,302

    Default Re: Reasons for Dismissal of a Speeding Ticket

    Here are my opinions on this matter. I am in no way an expert with PA traffic law.
    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    Question #1: Could it have been thrown out because the two officers were not present or was he correct that he could request a continuance as their representative? I was always under the impression that the officer had to show up to the hearing or the judge would throw the ticket out.
    Unless the officer is also an attorney, there would be no way that he could "represent" them. There is no way that he could request a continuance without their presence. This case should have been treated as the prosecution's failure to appear. If this was me, I would have thrown a "hissy-fit" in front of the judge; why were the people so lazy as to have an officer represent them, and even worse, an officer that has no relevance to the case!?

    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    #2 Could I have fought it based onthe bad information that the judge had?
    Yes. But the penalty would have been lowered to whatever the price of your ticket was. On the other hand, some states will let the prosecution amend the ticket. Maybe that's what happened. In that case, though, the prosecution would need to prove you were traveling at 68, rather than 54.

    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    #3 Is this information required
    Not necessarily. Unless there's a court rule for it. FL has a court rule that requires the serial number of the device that determined the speed to be on the ticket. On the contrary: States like WA could care less.

    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    #4 Could I and should I have requested this information ahead of time?
    Yes and No. In some cases, you want to be able to catch the prosecution off their guard. Trial by ambush. In states like PA or FL, it's a perfect idea. In WA, a horrible idea. That's why it's important to get a hold of and understand the court rules of your particular jurisdiction.

    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    #5 And lastly, my driver's license was ALSO recorded incorrectly on the ticket. Could I have fought the ticket based on that?
    Depends on what was recorded incorrectly. If it is obvious that it was a clerical error, then probably not. But if it was big enough to not understand if it was you or someone else cited, then yes.

    Quote Quoting Kelly1965
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    I am angry and feel intimidated/bullied by the officer and judge. I felt that if I argued anything they would be tough on me; so I said nothing except to correct the speed that I was cited for going. I will use this experience to learn from and will be more prepared in the future. And the answers to the questions above will help me.
    You're not alone on that one.
    "A jury consists of twelve persons chosen to decide who has the better lawyer." ~Robert Frost

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    2

    Default Re: Reasons for Dismissal of a Speeding Ticket

    Thank you BrendanjKeegan. I hope someone who knows PA traffic law will post because I feel bullied by the officer and judge/magistrate and feel victimized and may pursue this further with an attorney if it is possibble just to make a point.

    The police officer, "representing" the two officers who should have been there, clearly misled me into believing he would/could request a continuance "on their behalf." The judge/magistrate was not a fact finder/neutral party or he would have dismissed the ticket.

    The clocking officer's notes should state 54 in a 40, so they would surely have a hard time proving 68 in a 40. At the time I thought I had been going about 50 and know for sure I was not going 68. I am 100% sure that this is what I was told by the police officer who pulled me over; plus even though I only have the carbon copy I can make out 54, but the judge said I was there for 68 in a 40 and that simply was not true.

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