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  1. #1

    Default Disputing Information Provided on a Speeding Ticket

    Hi,
    I received a VC 22350 violation ticket today in CA. The description says "Prima Facie Speed". I was looking at the notice provided by the officer and there is incorrect information listed on the ticket. For Weather/Road Conditions/Traffic Condition its mentioned as Rain/Wet/Med. It was not raining. There was light rain previous night and the road was damp/wet (no puddles or stagnant water). Also the traffic was light as there were no cars ahead of me and behind me. Is there any way to point this now? Also, is there a way to prove that the weather conditions mentioned on the ticket is incorrect? Any past weather data I can provide? It was cloudy but not raining.
    Also, my speed on the ticket is cited as 65 MPH in a 40 MPH zone which is not accurate. I was above the speed limit but was between 50-55 as I had just taken a left turn from an internal street and the cop stopped me few hundred meters after the turn. Is there a way to contest the ticket as I did not feel that it was unsafe driving as there was no one in front of me and no pedestrians and at no point I was losing control of the vehicle. Also, its a 4 lane (2 lanes each side) highway and a slight downward slope. Hence after taking the turn and accelerating (momentarily), I realized it and slowed down but the cop was already behind me.
    I have not received the ticket in the mail yet. Is it worth contesting it as even if found guilty, the cost should have been lower as I was not going 15 MPH and certainly not 25 MPH above the speed limit as listed on the ticket? The officer did not mentioned how he measured my speed. On the ticket there is a LIDAR box and its empty.

    Regards.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,269

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    The descriptions are subjective and are merely notes for the officer. Unless the officer will testify that the road was slippery or otherwise hazardous, those items should make little difference in the case. Doing 50-55 in a 40 MPH zone is sufficient to be guilty of VC 22350. You can always admit to the actual speed and save yourself about $100 on the fines, but, that's your call.

    Keep in mind that the speed the officer cited you for may not be the speed you were traveling when YOU observed him - only when HE observed YOU. The slope and number of lanes does not make any real difference in that regard.

    As for possible defenses, sure, there are a few. The most common is to look into the speed survey to ascertain whether it is valid or not. The second is to try and argue that your speed was safe for conditions (not always an easy thing to do, especially if there was any traffic and dampness on the road); possible, but not generally a winning defense.

    You mention you have not gotten the "ticket in the mail"???? But, you said he gave you a ticket? Are you referring to the so-called "courtesy notice"? Keep in mind that you might never get a courtesy notice, so you might want to check on the citation every few days. If you intend to challenge the cite, be sure to appear on or before the court date listed on the citation. Also, if you wish to start with a trial by written declaration, check with the court to find out about the local process for that. Keep in mind that taking the case to trial may cost you the possibility of traffic school, so that should be a consideration if you want to avoid the possible insurance hit. And, yes, you can always go to court and admit to a speed of 15 MPH or less and hope for the requisite fine reduction that accompanies such a speed (should save you about $100).
    **********
    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

  3. #3

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    Thank you so much.

    I mentioned the number of lanes as this is not a small local street and could be a speed trap (speed survey) candidate as this is a highway and normally its safe to drive at 50 MPH. This was on Highway 238 in Fremont, CA. But if I am to argue on that, I was concerned that the incorrect information about the weather and traffic conditions could be an issue and wanted to see if I can provide any evidence on the weather atleast. Does the speed survey, if not valid, alone suffice as a credible defense for the case or will the conditions listed be also taken into consideration incase of an invalid survey?

    Yes. I was referring to the "Courtesy notice". Thanks for reminding me on checking the citation incase the mail does not arrive.

    About Traffic school, if I go ahead with the TBD and am found guilty will I be able to file for TDN and go to the court before the trial and pled no contest or guilty and request for traffic school before the case goes to trial?

    Also, its not listed how the office measured the speed. There is a LIDAR box but its empty and the speed limit board in the are says radar enforced. Is there a way to know how he came up with the approx speed. Also the "Speed Approx" box has "> 65" not sure if ">" is a marker or does it imply greater than 65. I looked at a sample paper form and looks like a marker. But am not sure.

    On the traffic schoool subject, I see arraignment will not be possible after TBD so have to go through the TDN and either pled guilt or no contest and request for traffic school.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    266

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    If yhe radar /lidar box on the citation is empty, chances are he paced you. In that case, speed trap laws do not apply. However, the basic speed law defense, that your speed was reasonable and prudent for conditions, applies for sure if you drove 55mph or less. I would suggest writing your tbd based on that. Do mention the exact speed you travelled, if known and less than 55mph. Obvioisly, the slower, the better. Do mention it was a divided higway, because that makes 50-55mph more reasonable. If found guilty, call the court and request the officer's tbd statement. That will tell you if he used radar or not, and help you plan TDN strategy. You can ask for traffic school if you lose TDN. I wouldn't plead no contest. If you nonethwless don't want to do TDN, go to walk-in court and ask to be re-arraigned. That way you'll be able to talk to a judge and ask for traffic school.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    Thank you so much @zeljo. Is there a way before the TBD to get information about how the speed was determined? Either paced or using a Radar/LIDAR? If a Radar/LIDAR was used and if the engineering and traffic survey (ETS) is in my favor, I would want to use that as a defense for TBD. I have already requested CalTrans for the ETS.

    SO if I get you correctly, even after losing TBD, I have a chance to request for re-arraignment and plead guilty and request for traffic school and I do not HAVE to go to TDN and plead guilt to get traffic school?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    18,827

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    You can certainly request informal discovery, but the first thing I'd do is look at the NOTA (the ticket) and see if you can see any indication there. Sometimes there are tell tales.

    The fact that there's a downward slope doesn't justify going faster.

    After a TBD loss, you request a TRIAL DE NOVO. It will result in a trial date being set. There's no "arraignment" in this case. You've already are considered as having pleaded not guilty.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1,177

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    If you were cited for CVC22350 and were exceeding the posted limit, more than likely what speed is "reasonable and safe" was previously determined by a traffic engineering survey, which established that speed limit as being the reasonable and safe threshold.

    In such a case, your personal opinion as to what is reasonable and safe is meaningless, unless you are a qualified traffic engineer who has conducted your own survey that can credibly challenge the existing one.

    Get a copy of the survey for that road and study it. Then determine if you have the expertise, training and background necessary to conduct your own survey and successfully challenge it. Otherwise, traffic school may look very tempting.

    .

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    266

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    Yes, you can mail an Informal Discovery Request to the police agency that issued the citation, Attn. Custodian of Records. Request specifically the copy of the reverse side of the citation. One format you can use is here . Or you can get from Amazon the excellent book "Fight Your Ticket and Win in California" by David Brown.

    Also, officers often write on the reverse side of citation in a shothand code meant to repel ticket warriors like yourself. Feel free to upload it here if you need help deciphering.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    Experts,
    Need your help on this. As I had mentioned earlier, I received this ticket on Highway 238 (Mission Blvd) in Fremont near Cadencia St. I requested CalTrans for Engineering and Survey report. They send me the report which could be found at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1brv...ew?usp=sharing. Looks like they have sent me the report for a stretch of Highway 238 in the city of Hayward. Is it an incorrect report or am I missing something?

    Regards.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    18,827

    Default Re: Received a VC 22350 Ticket

    Yep, that's the wrong survey. You'll have to try again with CALTRANS.

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