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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    15

    Default Speed Trap Defense

    Evening,

    I have another round of traffic court coming up in Florida for a speeding ticket issues during a speed trap. This was no ordinary speed trap (if there is such a thing) as the police had 19 motorcycle cops pulling over just about every car as they came over a hill. My primary defense is "Unlawful Speed" FL Statute 316.183(1) ..."in every event, speed shall be controlled as may be necessary to avoid colliding with any person, vehicle, or other conveyance or object..."
    Primarily because the three cars in front of me slammed on there brakes and I zipped around them to avoid collision.

    My question pertains to a defense from the speed trap creating an unsafe intersection or road hazard? Is that possible? I have yet to find anything related to speed traps.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LA LA Land
    Posts
    9,175

    Default Re: Speed Trap Defense

    Quote Quoting llchelp
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    I have another round of traffic court coming up in Florida for a speeding ticket issues during a speed trap. This was no ordinary speed trap (if there is such a thing) as the police had 19 motorcycle cops pulling over just about every car as they came over a hill.
    Your definition of "speed trap" could not be farther form the legal definititon of the same. While generally, people may refer to a speed enforcement operation as a speed trap (because they felt trapped after driving at a speed that is in violation of the posted limit), arguing the same in court will not get you out of the ticket.

    I did a quick search of Florida Statutes for the term "speed trap" but was unable to find one. but I can tell you that legally, a "speed trap" is a term used in reference to how the speed limits are established and posted, not in how they are enforced. With that in mind, here's a link for you that explains that in further details: Florida Statutes - Title XXIII Motor Vehicles - Chapter 316 STATE UNIFORM TRAFFIC CONTROL- Section 316.189 Establishment of municipal and county speed zones.--

    Quote Quoting llchelp
    View Post
    My primary defense is "Unlawful Speed" FL Statute 316.183(1) ..."in every event, speed shall be controlled as may be necessary to avoid colliding with any person, vehicle, or other conveyance or object..."
    Note the part I underlined... it says "speed shall be controlled"... And unless you can somehow articulate that "zipping around three vehicles" does in anyway meet the definition of "speed control" then your argument will not work.

    What statute were you cited for, what was the posted limit and hoew fast were you going/cited for?

    Quote Quoting llchelp
    View Post
    My question pertains to a defense from the speed trap creating an unsafe intersection or road hazard? Is that possible? I have yet to find anything related to speed traps.
    Keep in mind that the road hazard was not created by the pesence of the officers... The road hazard was created by people driving through that intersection at a speed that is higher than the posted limit -i.e. higher that the speed that has been determined to be safe for that intersection.

    Furthermore, the officers did nothing to entice you to speed so that they can catch you speeding... so the word "trap" would not apply in this case.

    If the posted limit was not legally justified (pursuant to 316.189) and assuming the officers still cited you, then you can argue "speed trap" - limit is unjustified and therefore I was not driving in excess of the "legally posted limit".... I ask for a dismissal....

    Point is, arguing "I was driving, saw the officers, tried to slow down but got caught anyway", will not work as a legitimate defense in court. Reason? You were caught allegedly speeding so your primary defense (and assuming the posted limits is indeed justified) should be based on your ability to either prove that you were not speeding, or that the officer's estimate/reading was somehow erroneous.

    Without that, and barring any other procedural errors that the case may go through, you supposed "speed trap" defense will more likely not work.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    3,576

    Default Re: Speed Trap Defense

    Is this related to your other thread, where you stated you've already been to court? I see that in that post there were 18 officers, but in this one there are 19, so, maybe, it's a different matter. If it is, you REALLY have problems with "speed traps", don't you?

    Barry
    Where am I going? And why am I in this handbasket?

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