My question involves a driver's license issued by the State of: Washington.
Let me begin by
A police officer pulled me over for expired tabs today, and I was surprised to find out that my license had been suspended. Before I knew it, I was handcuffed and sitting in the back seat of his cruiser, while he ran my history and reminded me of a ticket I was issued in September. My mail on these matters was sent to a previous address. For someone who's most monumental offense to this point had been jaywalking, this was sort of a big deal. I'm kind of freaking out.
So yes: for not changing my address responsibly.
The ticket which caused my suspension is another topic altogether. It was a sketchy stop, the officer was out of uniform, I was not issued tickets on the scene or given an opportunity to inquire to my infraction, and he was excessively angry with me. I had recently moved so I called the court to change the address, they said it was strange that he would not issue a ticket on the spot, and they assured me that my address change would be effective if the ticket was submitted. It turns out that I called the court of a neighboring district - I said I was unsure of which district it was, and the lady said the address change should be effective throughout. I didn't receive anything in the mail. Based on the clerk's opinion of the incident, the nature of the stop, and the lack of a ticket, I decided the stop was a scare tactic and let it go. Once again:
My current situation is this: I have a court date in a week (DWSL 3rd). I've read online that jail-time isn't out of the question. Before that court date, I want to handle my previous ticket, tabs, and get my license in order to make a good impression on the judge. But if I had known the ticket was for real, I would have contested it - now, it's been so long, I don't even know if that's a possibility. Part of me thinks I should just pay it to make a good impression, but holy crap, it was an $1100 triple-infraction, that I felt was questionable.
My question is this: am I screwed? If I ask you guys if I need a lawyer, I have a feeling the answer will be yes. But this is overwhelming: I've never had to think about a lawyer, I don't know who to ask or how to go about this wisely. I want to make sure things do not get worse. Any advice, is appreciated. Thank you for being patient with my retelling.