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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    7

    Default Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    I live in Texas, and the other night i was at the park until about 2 am in the morning, taking a walk with a friend to blow off some steam. As we were leaving the park a cop stops us in the middle of the road. He tells us that he had came to the park, waited for us, left, came back again and waited for us for about an hour, saying he was going to have our cars towed. He informed me, my friend was in their own vehicle, that the park closes at 11pm. I told him that i didnt know that but i do now, he takes me license and goes back to his car. To my knowledge their is no clear sign saying that the park is closed at a certain time, im sure there is i must just have not have seen it. Anyways, he ends up writing me a ticket and gives me a court date, thats fine and dandy, i sign and tell him to have a nice day.

    I take a look at the ticket and read through it just for my enjoyment and noticed that the location he had written down was a completely different park, and a completely different street. Off the top of my head i would have to say that the location was over 3 miles away.

    Is this grounds for dismissal? I will admit i was at the park at that late of time, i mean im not gunna lie about that, but i was not at that particular park. I feel that if i plead guilty to the ticket and it goes on reecord that i was at that other park, that if something would of happened at that other park that i could possibly be blamed for the crime, and i dont want that to come back and bite me in the ass.

    What should i do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    You don't have to admit to anything to bring a motion for dismissal - it's enough to say "I was not at location X at this time and date." The first complication will be if the officer's recollection is consistent with the ticket - the judge would have to pick which story to believe. The second complication is that if this is a clerical error by the officer, the court may allow the amendment of the ticket, or the ticket could potentially be reissued after dismissal with correct information.

    This is a ticket under a local ordinance? Have you looked up the language of the ordinance?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    2,344

    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    If enough time passes it is possible that the officer will not testify from his specific memory (which he is required to do) but will rely on the information he wrote on the ticket. So if you can get him to testify under oath that the incident occurred at the other park and then present your own witness testifying to the contrary you may be able to convince the judge or hearing officer to throw out the cop's testimony. That would be a better strategy than challenging the accuracy of the citation. Once he says under oath "yes, it happened at Cedar Creek Park" and then you prove that you were nowhere near Cedar Creek Park then you have a good chance of a dismissal. Just be careful not to prove that you were in "Oak Grove Park" after hours, or you have another offense.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    I looked up the language of the ordinance and it said that all parks are to close at 11pm, except for special occasions with permits and yada yada. Said it is a class C misdmeanor if you violate that law. Part 2, Chapter 22, section 22-28. http://library.municode.com/index.as...tateName=Texas

    I was thinking that the ticket would just be rewritten and reissued and ill have to pay the fine or whatever. Im just really trying to protect my self here is all. My record is squeaky clean so im hoping that he will just throw the ticket out and say "BAD" slap me on the wrist and let me on my way.

    So pretty much be carefuly not to self incriminate myself? Just stick to what the ticket says unless the judge asks me where i really was ya? So if the police officer says that the offence took place at park A, but the ticket says Park B then its pretty much going to be thrown out?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    2,344

    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    No, you will have to provide evidence that convinces the judge that the incident did not take place where the officer says it took place. You said you were with someone else. That person's testimony would be helpful to your case. A judge is unlikely to take your word over the police officer's regardless of what you say. If the officer admits that it was a different park and that he just made a clerical error in writing in the name of the park it won't matter that much. But if he says you were in park A and you can prove you were not in park A it doesn't much matter where you were as long as you were not where the officer says you were.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    The issue, though, is that it may not be of much help to escape the charge (if that in fact happens) based upon a confession to the same charge at a different location. We're talking about discrete offenses so there's no double jeopardy - being acquitted of trespassing in Park X does not preclude the issuance of a new citation for trespassing in Park Y. Following the denial of being in Park X, the judge isn't going to find acceptable, "I'm not going to tell you" as an answer to the inevitable follow-up question of "Then where were you at the specified date and time?"

    If you're offered a deferral, I would very much consider taking it and then applying for expunction as soon as your probation is over. Dismissal on payment of fines would be even better. (I can't tell you what the prosecutor will offer.)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Park Curfew Ticket with Wrong Park

    Ok, well i've never been to court before so i have no idea how this is going to happen. but i dont really want to make a big deal out of this, if the fine is going to be minimal then ill pay it, but i dont really want it on my record either. So can anyone do like a walk through of whats going to happen? Cause i dont want to say something when im not suppose to or what not.

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