Re: Best Way to Ask for Leniency
Do what Jim (EWYLTJ) suggested. Ask for a continuance. File a TBWD (yes, you'll have to post bail). Just say, "I'm not guilty". You do not have to prove you're not guilty -- the state must prove you are. If the officer fails to respond, your case will be dismissed.
If that doesn't work, ask for a trial de novo. If the officer doesn't show, you win. Do a search for 22349(a) and you'll find a wealth of information about how to fight this in case the officer does.
After you've done the TBWD, lost, and scheduled the de novo hearing, if you're still not comfortable fighting, you can still ask for traffic school. This will be a valuable lesson, you'll learn some interesting, but trivial, information, and who knows, miracles do happen.
Where am I going? And why am I in this handbasket?