My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: New Jersey
I only ask/care because it was truly unfair.
Here's the story:
I was 19 and driving home at midnight from a friend's house. The road I always take home was backed up for half a mile. I didn't know why since it's never happened before. I figured it was an accident and I should turn around and find a different way home. Since there was a parking lot a couple feet behind me, I simply backed up into it. I checked to make sure there weren't any cars coming (it was absolutely car-free - not a single car in sight). Anyways, shortly after, I was pulled over. The cop just asked for my license and registration, then disappeared. This was the first time I was ever pulled over (and only time to date). I didn't know why he'd pulled me over. When he reappeared, he asked me if I had been drinking (I hadn't) and proceeded to tell me that most people who back up in the street are usually drunk. Anyways, after I explained myself to him, he told me that I could plead "not guilty" in court as he issued me a ticket, which confused me. I mean, I did back up in the street. Pleading not guilty would've been a lie.
When I went to court, I was only able to meet with the prosecutor for a couple seconds - just long enough for him to mumble something quickly, write something and excuse me. What I ended up pleading guilty to was "careless driving". I didn't know what that entailed and I honestly thought I was getting off easy since what I had done seemed so minor. However, four years later, the charge is still on my record and my insurance rate is still affected. And, honestly, only now have I bothered to look up the "careless driving" charge, which I'm unfortunately discovering is worth two points.
I feel really bothered by this. Nothing was explained to me and I didn't get to explain myself to the officer beforehand. It also baffles me how flawed our justice system is. I have a friend that has been in four car accidents within two years (her fault) and she hasn't received a single ticket. And last year I was in an accident where I was rear-ended by someone who was rear-ended by someone who claimed she wasn't paying attention. She was driving without a license (not that it would've mattered since it was suspended) and lied about her identity. I don't recall exactly what she was charged with, but it was really inexpensive up front and didn't include any points (the judge was kind enough to explain this to her). What the heck?
So, what I want to know is if "careless driving" will ever be removed from my record. I don't think it will, but I thought I'd ask anyway since I'm still hoping the answer's "yes". I'm incredibly worried that it's going to negatively impact my future.