Today, I contested a citation for breaking a statute: disobeying a posted (Stop) sign. I made a short video showing that the intersection has a blind corner where one risks being hit from behind if one pauses for too long. The officer admitted on the stand the that intersection, which has two Stop signs, is the most ticketed place in the whole township; however, of the two signs, one sign gets 1 out of 20 violations. When questioned, he could not venture any guess for this disparity.
I pointed out, through video evidence, the hazard of this junction, and why this disparity of violations takes place: Drivers wishing to regard the posted sign and obey it, may pause only briefly out of warranted safety concerns.
I lost the case. The $109.50 fine was not reduced.
Reason: You must stop at Stop signs.
As the judge was deliberating in her chambers, the officer says to me, “I remember you. Weren’t you going to school, to a class? And I said you could use this [ticket story] in your class [Theology of Suffering].”
Officer Myers: “How did that turn out?”
I said, “It went fine. I graduated…from seminary.”
Officer Myers: “From seminary. Oh, okay. Oh, good. What are you going to do now?”
Me: “Ministry. I hope to help people in recovery from drugs and alcohol.”
Officer: “Oh, ppptt, that’s a tough group. That’s hard. Well, good for you. That’s good. Good for you.”
Me: “I see those types of problems as spiritual problems. I think recovery and healing can take root if they start working at a core spiritual level. Then, healing comes spiritually, emotionally, and chemically.”
He seemed to lighten up a bit after that.
A few minutes later I was found guilty. $109.50, (I broke a Statute, so I received no points against my license.)
Here’s the court video I presented. (After the session, both the officer and magistrate offered compliments on my presentation. The strangeness of that bit caught me off guard.)
I still contend I did not break the spirit of the law, even if I did not duly pause. My behavior will change henceforth!
Have you ever plead “not guilty”?
What do you think about this case? :)
STOP, don’t roll through…
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