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  1. #1

    Angry Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    My question involves a traffic citation from the state of: California

    I got the most insanely ridiculous ticket today that stated I was in violation of section VC 22502A. It said I was 18 inches from the curb, but that sounds like I was parked in the middle of the 2 way street. My car was not stopping the flow of traffic going down this particular street, and I typically obsess about parking as close to the curb as possible. It was a space between two parked cars so maneuverung around was tricky. This is the second parking ticket I've received this year (the first one was my fault), but this one is ridiculous. I plan to fight it because it was unnecessary and I'm sick of this happening while I'm unemployed. The ticket was for $58 dollars. Give me a break! Any advice on this will be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Since you probably have all the time in the world, fight it, through all three levels if necessary. Statistics show (at least in Orange County) that most people who take it the final stage (Superior Court), win. If you're lucky, you may win at one of the first two levels.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Were you parked 18" or more from the curb? Were you parked facing the wrong way?

    [indent]22502. (a) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, a vehicle
    stopped or parked upon a roadway where there are adjacent curbs shall
    be stopped or parked with the right-hand wheels of the vehicle
    parallel with and within 18 inches of the right-hand curb, except
    that a motorcycle shall be parked with at least one wheel or fender
    touching the right-hand curb. Where no curbs or barriers bound a
    two-way roadway, right-hand parallel parking is required unless
    otherwise indicated.
    [/quote]

    As for statistics saying that one prevails if they appeal all the way to superior court, I have never heard any such statistics. In my experience, very few get that far because few people are willing to invest that much time into a parking cite, and, if they are faulty it is usually identified at one of the two lower levels of appeal. That, and if you lose at superior court you also now have to pay the court costs associated with the appeal.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Good news, it does not sound like you were parked in the middle of the street. It does however sound like you were parked more than 18" from the curb. I suggest you pay the ticket and park better in the future.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Quote Quoting cdwjava
    View Post
    As for statistics saying that one prevails if they appeal all the way to superior court, I have never heard any such statistics.
    I mistakenly said Orange County -- but it is true for the city of Costa Mesa:

    The result is predictable. Last year, the city of Costa Mesa, a Data Ticket city, issued a total of 27,527 citations. Of these, 1,135 were appealed, but only 162óless than 0.6 percentówere dismissed. Of the nearly 1,000 citations that were upheld, only seven were taken to Superior Court. Six of those seven were dismissed.
    Quote Quoting cdwjava
    View Post
    If they are faulty it is usually identified at one of the two lower levels of appeal. That, and if you lose at superior court you also now have to pay the court costs associated with the appeal.
    Carl: I don't know if you read the thread about Feng's travails in Costa Mesa, but the (administrative) lower level reviews were clearly perfunctory. I'm not saying this is the case everywhere in the state, but it certainly reduces one's faith in the "administrative" system.

    The cost of a parking ticket appeal is universally $25, I believe.

    Here, the plaintiff would be taking the chance that the issuing officer won't show at court. VC 40230 does say the citation is "prima facie evidence of the facts contained therein," but in the officer's absence, his arguments may well sway the judge.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    One must keep in mind that with the advent of digital cameras, some parking enforcement agencies make it a requirement for the citing officer to take a picture of the alleged offense as the vehicle was parked at the time the citation was issued. This is at least applicable in most cities that I frequent.

    So there's a big difference between being sick of "questionable" parking citations, and being sick of parking citations because you get caught often!

    For this particular violation, and even without a picture, it is NOT based on a disputed sign or pavement marking. As such, it will always boil down to the word of the officer that the vehicle was 18+ away from the curb versus the word of the registered owner that it wasn't. And frankly, I don't see how the first two admin level hearings (or the court hearing) will end up in favor of the registered owner! And other than the citing officer's failing to appear at the final stage (the court hearing), I don't see any potential for the registered owner to prevail under the circumstances.

    If Conejo Ultimo is willing to spend all that time and effort in hopes that the officer will fail to appear at the court hearing, then by all means go for it. My guess is that time would be best invested in hitting the pavement, looking for employment, rather than banking on a slight glimmer that the officer is a slacker!

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Costa Mesa may have some private contractor that does this, and said contractor may not appear in court, but law enforcement agencies are a different animal. If subpoenaed, the officer will likely show - as would a parking enforcement employee.

    The cost of an appeal is usually not worth the time so most are not appealed that far. If a parking cite costs you, say, $57 you have spent more than that in lost wages, gas, and time for the first two appeals. If you take the day off a third time for court, and risk a $25+ assessment (and that article was written 5 years ago so the courts may well have raised those rates) you might end up spending two to three times the cost of the parking citation by the time you are done.

    What the article also fails to acknowledge is that parking cites are civil matters and not criminal ones and that is the reason why they have a different face on them than normal citations.

    However, none of this benefits the OP who may or may not have been 18" from the curb. Since he has not come back yet to offer some further explanation, who knows?
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    Quote Quoting cdwjava
    View Post
    The cost of an appeal is usually not worth the time so most are not appealed that far. If a parking cite costs you, say, $57 you have spent more than that in lost wages, gas, and time for the first two appeals. If you take the day off a third time for court, and risk a $25+ assessment (and that article was written 5 years ago so the courts may well have raised those rates) you might end up spending two to three times the cost of the parking citation by the time you are done.
    All quite true. My original answer wouldn't have been so flippant if the OP hadn't said he was unemployed!!

    Quote Quoting Conejo Ultimo
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    I plan to fight it because it was unnecessary and I'm sick of this happening while I'm unemployed.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    I'm sick of this happening while I'm unemployed
    I suggest you take the extra time in your day and invest part of it learning to park correctly.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Ticket for Car Being 18 Inches from Curb

    So here's an update: I sent a letter saying more or less that the ticket wasn't necessary, and the police replied back that based on the "evidence" they had that the citation was valid. I have the option of paying the citation which I don't want to do, or I can request an administrative hearing by mail. I am eager to do the later. The only thing is I'm not sure what to show in terms of evidence, and I don't know if the officer has any.

    Just to review, I parallel parked my car between two others on a Friday and tried to get as close to the curb as possible. There was enough room for me to park, but only so much room to maneuver in getting close to the curb. I double checked where my car was in relation to the curb as well as behind the car in front of me and also of traffic passing by. I concluded that my car was not obstructing traffic and was not out any further than it should be. Also, to answer one question, I was not parked on the wrong side of the road. I didn't get the ticket until the following Sunday morning, and I had not moved my car since Friday as I didn't need to use it for anything. When I passed by my car and saw the ticket, I was absolutely flabergasted. If there were other cars ticketed for the same thing, I was not aware. Mine was not the only one further away from the curb, and I still say that it was not that far out. If it were than I would have found another parking spot.

    Unfortunately I don't have any photographic evidence to back up my claim. All I really have is my word against the officer's, and yes, it would be nice if he or she didn't show up to court. Any advice on this would be very welcome. Thanks for your replies thus far.

    I don't believe I was that far over. I would have moved my car closer to the curb if there was more room to maneuver, but I could only get so far. I felt I was far enough behind the car parked in front of me that I wasn't in the way of anything. 18" makes it sound like I was in the middle of the road.

    No, my car was not facing the wrong way. Thanks for asking.

    If the officer took a picture of where my car was parked then I haven't seen it. I parked in the spot on a Friday and didn't get the ticket till early Sunday morning having not needed to use my car. I double checked to make certain I was far enough to the curb as I could possibly get, but since I was parking in between two cars, there was only so much room to maneuver.

    Here's my update:


    Quote Quoting Conejo Ultimo
    View Post
    So here's an update: I sent a letter saying more or less that the ticket wasn't necessary, and the police replied back that based on the "evidence" they had that the citation was valid. I have the option of paying the citation which I don't want to do, or I can request an administrative hearing by mail. I am eager to do the later. The only thing is I'm not sure what to show in terms of evidence, and I don't know if the officer has any.

    Just to review, I parallel parked my car between two others on a Friday and tried to get as close to the curb as possible. There was enough room for me to park, but only so much room to maneuver in getting close to the curb. I double checked where my car was in relation to the curb as well as behind the car in front of me and also of traffic passing by. I concluded that my car was not obstructing traffic and was not out any further than it should be. Also, to answer one question, I was not parked on the wrong side of the road. I didn't get the ticket until the following Sunday morning, and I had not moved my car since Friday as I didn't need to use it for anything. When I passed by my car and saw the ticket, I was absolutely flabergasted. If there were other cars ticketed for the same thing, I was not aware. Mine was not the only one further away from the curb, and I still say that it was not that far out. If it were than I would have found another parking spot.

    Unfortunately I don't have any photographic evidence to back up my claim. All I really have is my word against the officer's, and yes, it would be nice if he or she didn't show up to court. Any advice on this would be very welcome. Thanks for your replies thus far.

    I don't believe I was that far over. I would have moved my car closer to the curb if there was more room to maneuver, but I could only get so far. I felt I was far enough behind the car parked in front of me that I wasn't in the way of anything. 18" makes it sound like I was in the middle of the road.

    No, my car was not facing the wrong way. Thanks for asking.

    If the officer took a picture of where my car was parked then I haven't seen it. I parked in the spot on a Friday and didn't get the ticket till early Sunday morning having not needed to use my car. I double checked to make certain I was far enough to the curb as I could possibly get, but since I was parking in between two cars, there was only so much room to maneuver.

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