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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    2

    Question School Zone Speeding Ticket, but School Zone Lights Weren't Flashing

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: Washington. Im a college student in the city of Bellingham and about 2 weeks ago, while i was driving my friend back over to his apartment at 12:45pm, I was pulled over by an officer. I was right next to the local high school.
    The speed limit sign says 25 but there is also a couple signs that say "Speed Limit 20 MPH, when lights are flashing" this reminds me of the "When children are present law" which is very grey. His officer report says that i was going a steady speed of 30 MPH in a 20 MPH zone. The only problem with that is the lights dont flash at that time of the day. High schooler's are not entering or exiting the building at that time. I have gone there on a more recent day at the same time to see if the sign was indeed flashing. It was not.
    How do i get the proper evidence to support my claim? who should i be making phone calls to or having statements notorized with. I plan to subpeona the officer and question him accordingly but im afraid that my lack of legal experience could be my downfall in the case. I really need some advice, I plan on getting a consultation from a lawyer within the next week but i don't have the money to have him appear in court for me. My ticket was for 210.00. Any advice or help with my situation would be appreciated.

    Also I have never gotten a ticket for anything other than parking infractions in the past, and would really like to be able to throw this case out or have the ticket lowered to a more acceptable amount.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    9,085

    Default Re: Collegelegal Procedure Help (School Zone Not in Effect when Lights Are Not Flashi

    Are you saying that you were only speeding 5 miles over the speed limit rather than 10, I am not sure I understand your defense.

    Other than that, bring up the fact that the lights weren't flashing at quarter of one in the morning.

    By the way, there is NOTHING gray about "when children are present". If children are present anytime day or night, you slow down. I don't see why that would be gray.
    All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence; then success is sure.
    - Mark Twain

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    South-Central Cali
    Posts
    1,276

    Default Re: Collegelegal Procedure Help (School Zone Not in Effect when Lights Are Not Flashi

    ^^^ Jeff is dead on -- the WA law effectively says that if you see children ahead, you slow down.

    I recommend you visit the school principal/admin office and get a copy of their schedule to show that 12:45 isn't recess so no kids should be out and about. You can also contact the local department of transportation (city) to get a "schedule" for the signal. Both of those should help lower your fine to a 30 in a non-school 25.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Collegelegal Procedure Help (School Zone Not in Effect when Lights Are Not Flashi

    Yes, i guess in a way i would like to be able to bring it down to a normal speeding ticket rather than a school zone violation, in the hopes that since it is my first ticket they might let me walk away with a slap on the wrists.

    Also keep in mind it was at 12:45 pm not am. so it wouldnt be "a quarter to one in the morning" it would be "a quarter to one in the afternoon"

    I guess by gray i meant that as i have been searching around looking for any help, and i see alot of discussions about people getting tickets when there arent children outside near any crosswalks at the time and they still get slapped with a big hefty ticket. Either way, that was the least important thing i mentioned in that whole paragraph and i dont really need advice on that part of the law.

    Im trying to focus on reducing this and possibly throwing it away as a first offense.

    Also, Im 19. Please forgive me for anything i say that sounds juvenile or unintelligent, im trying my best here. I just really want to know what options i have.

    That was alot more helpful to me quirkyquark, i didnt know where i could get those records, although i knew they existed.

    Also I should add that there wasn't any children around at the time of the infraction (I assume they were in school since highschool's here dont have a recess they have a block schedule from 7:00am-3:00pm, there were hardly people driving on the road for that matter.

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