My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: CA
I picked up my mom from the airport in the morning in Los Angeles, and took the offramp from 405-N onto Culver Blvd at 8:30am.
You can view the intersection on Google street view here, and zooming out you can see the intersection (although it is still under construction from the satellite view).
I stopped at the red light at the intersection. Checked for oncoming cars, took a right turn on red, drove 2 blocks and got pulled over and cited for turning on red, not following the sign, CVC 21461(a)
You wont see it in the google street view, but according to the officer they were added 4 months ago. Wow, and I go through this intersection very regularly and that's a long time to not see the sign.
What's particularly frustrating about this is that I had been pulled over for the exact same offense under the exact same circumstances and given a warning. It was an intersection I drove through regularly, sign was recently added, never noticed because you drive unconsciously through the streets you know. After this incident, I was laser focused on picking up these types of signs.
But they used different signs in each case saying the exact same thing!
According to the California sign chart, R13A for my warning stop, and R10-11 for my recent citation. The latter is a small novella compared to the crystal clarity of R13A.
Anyway, enough of my belly-aching. I recognize that I'm probably going to lose this one, but I want to mount whatever defense I can. So I'm going to schedule a court date, plead not guilty and mount a defense.
That 21461 code is pretty handy for cops. They just have to say that you violated whatever the sign says without having to worry about any particular traffic rules and regulations. "The sign said this, you did the opposite!"
I can't really contest that the sign was not clearly visible. (It was, there were two saying the same thing.) Although I was tuned in to detect a different type of sign, and it's dangerous to read while driving! That doesn't sound like a defense.
The cop was posted on Globe Ave (seen on Google) waiting for people to make this mistake. I think he had a clear view of the red light and anyone who would drive into the intersection from the offramp. Heck, I saw him as I drove right past and felt thankful that he was looking out for traffic violators, and was puzzled when he pulled up behind me.
So, can you think of any angles for defense here?