Re: Yellow Light vs Red Light
I see nothing illegal about entering an intersection while the light is yellow regardless of whether it changes while in the intersection to red. The statutes state that when faced with a red light one must stop (at the appropriate stop line, imaginary line, etc.). All a yellow is indicated as is that the drivers ROW is about to end. It does not prohibit one from entering the intersection while yellow and obviously if you enter while it is yellow, you are never faced with the red light and it's requirements.
You might attempt to discover if there are traffic cameras at that intersection. If there are, you may be able to obtain the footage to show the color of the light when you actually entered the intersection.
something about California's system sounds illegal. Can't put my finger on it but withdrawing the drivers option of traffic school if you do not simply plead guilty rather than when found guilty by a judge seems like wrong.
The big thing to remember if you choose to fight the ticket is that traffic school is guaranteed to be available now. It is up to the judge's discretion following a trial.
I am not an attorney and any advice is not to be construed as legal advice. You might even want to ignore my advice. Actually, there are plenty of real attorneys that you might want to ignore as well.