Win in Traffic Court
this is unsolicited legal advice that will most likely improve the outcome of traffic court.
- Don't break the law!
- Do not hire an attorney! They are a part of the system that's convicting you. They see the people of the system all the time, and they want to maintain a good relationship with all of those people. All the courts want convictions and your money. Any attorney, especially public defenders will advise you to plea out your charges for a reduction of charges, and/or penalties. The deal they get you is supposed to be the best deal possible, and urge you to take it right away. lawyers want their money, and to maintain good relations with the people of the courts. The people of the courts system, mostly want convictions, your money, and not waste any time doing it. so, your attorney gets you a " smokin' " deal, and the courts get their conviction, all while trying to do this in as few court appearances possible. Also, the moment you declare that someone will be representing you for your court proceedings, you lose out on a lot of rights and have limited control of the the situation. It is not in anybody's best interest to clear you of all charges.
- Do not sign anything if you can get away with it. The moment any documents are signed by you, such as the ticket, advisement of your rights, or acknowledgement of continuance is when you officially recognize that you understand what you're being charged with, and why. Signing any documents also ensures that you are within that district's jurisdiction to charge you with whatever offenses they seem fit. Police officers may threaten to take you to jail, and judges may try to hold you in contempt of court, but those are scare tactics used to gain your signature and have more control over you. Not that it's impossible for them to punish anybody for doing so, but not likely. If you are really smart, and do your research, and your charges aren't too serious, you might even be able request that all charges be dismissed due to lack of jurisdiction and want to proceed under common law, which every judge is sworn to uphold. Everybody else in the courtroom is most likely clueless about common law, and their heads are left spinning, while you're out the door.
- Do your research! Do your best to understand the laws in your state, county, city, and district regarding the charges against you, as well as rules for court procedure and police conduct. http://lexisnexis.com most likely has all the information you need, but you may have to pay a fee to utilize their webstie. The fee isn't outrageous, and gives you access to valuable information. It's well worth it, but disappointing to users that got to use it for free. Also, some "cop shops" will have updated copies of revised statutes for your state and possibly for that district, that you can purchase. It's kind of nice having a book in front of you for reference and review. Just being able to flip through the pages, bookmarking and highlighting works a lot better for some people. Regardless of how or where you get your information from, make sure it'e accurate and up to date.
- Continue with even more research, there's a ton of information out there in relation to your case. Getting some of this info can be tedious and time consuming to gather, so start early. First, get a copy of the police report, and any other documents relating to your case. This is rarely easy to accomplish, there's often a lot of roadblocks to keep you from this information. Such as procedure for handling and viewing documents, locations of the records. The most offensive and useless people seem to answer the phones almost every time you call, looking for records. You will most likely be misled more than once by many representatives of your state/district. Don't get discouraged, it will pay off in the end and possibly help you develop patience. You will most likely need a lot of patience.
- So, another level of research will definitely help your case. review and document in any way possible, the details of where, when and who was present at the time you were cited. Many people have been known to get lucky in many different ways. Sometimes, a simple error on the citation can be cause for dismissal. The big ones, are your name, license plate number, DL-number and other important information like that. Other errors can be hit or miss, and you just never know if it'll get you out of it, or make the courts upset for even attempting to pull such a move. Judges will not hesitate to make matters worse for you if you say or do anything that they do not like. Also inspect the area where you got pulled over, or where the offenses were committed, and take photos of the whole area, looking to document anything helpful. Do this on the same day of the week you were charged, around the same time, and with similar weather conditions. Look at traffic signs, traffic patterns, visibility, any detail that works in your favor. Anything that can prove anything on the ticket or in the police report as incorrect. Although this info may not get the case dismissed, it can show how unreliable the officers perception, memory and testimony can be. Discredit the officers memory as much as possible, while still being respectful-ish and don't over due it.
- By now, you should have gone to court several times. continue and reschedule proceedings as often as possible, for as long as possible. Continue preliminary hearings to gain legal advice and possibly legal counsel. You might be able to stretch that one for two or three continuances. Then, you set a date for deposition, which you shouldn't have had to make a plea yet. The courts will often try to scare you into a plea by this time, telling you to make your plea right there, because you have to. Sometimes you have to test them by seeing if they will enforce the things they say. You can often get a good feel for the the prosecution and judge, just by arriving early and checking in late. Use this time to observe the characters of the people you will be dealing with and the outcomes of the cases, especially ones similar to yours. They do not have the authority to do much of anything to you. The biggest mistake a person can ever make, is admit guilt. Whether it be to the police officer, the DA, the judge, or even the clerk recorder. They are tricky about it too, agreeing to one small detail that's even out of context can destroy your case.
- So, after getting as many continuances possible, you set the next hearing for deposition. Now, that says that the deal originally offered to you wasn't good enough, and the prosecution will review the case one more time to sweeten any deal that had been offered already. Sometimes these proceedings can be continued as well. To gather evidence, consult an expert, or some silly thing. Some states and districts have laws that can really save your hide. Such as dismissing charges upon displaying up to date documents at any hearing. No insurance, some courts will drop that charge when you display any proof of insurance that's valid at the time of the court proceeding where it's being displayed, with no concern of coverage on the date of the citation. Driving without a license, sometimes if you bring a valid license to court, even if it wasn't valid at the time of being ticketed, will get any charges related to driving without a license dropped or at least greatly reduced.
- By this time, it should be about six months after being issued a ticket. Sometimes more, sometimes less. But regardless, the DA has probably offered a couple of good deals, and you have hopefully had the opportunity to get your documents ion order. Valid driver's license, insurance, police reports, etc. while hopefully having time to review and understand the laws in your area. The shear quantity of content and the details enclosed in the laws governed by any court is ridiculously overwhelming and it is easy to overlook or misinterpret many important details. Find a law student if you can, to help navigate and understand certain aspects of the laws, and your case.
- Sometimes, the courts are tired of seeing you, and has reviewed your case close enough, to offer a deal that's almost too good to be true. If you feel the terms are acceptable, by all means accept what they're offering. If their offer isn't good enough for you, and you believe that your defense is solid. Plead not guilty and set your case for trial, hopefully with the option to be done in front of a jury. There has been a lot of publicity discrediting the police, the courts and our government. Possibly swaying the outcome in your favor. A judge is a part of the system prosecuting you, and will often side with the prosecution even though they are supposed to be unbiased. So try to have a jury trial, and not have you case determined by the judge. Call any witnesses you deem helpful to your case, and try to keep the fact that you have witnesses from the courts for as long as possible. Sometimes you are required to report any witnesses before trial with varying limitations of time, which limits the advantage of surprise you once had. Attempt to discredit any testimony given by anybody suggesting that you're guilty, usually it's just the police officer who cited you. ask them about details you know they got wrong or that you are pretty sure they won't recall, and show proof of this if possible. If they say "um" a lot, can demonstrate a lack of confidence and put their credibility in question. Be sure to point out anything that supports the idea that the officer doesn't recall everything pertinent to your case. Which is also why you push your case as far back as you can, making the office recall an event further away in time. It's possible they won't remember the event even after reviewing the ticket, reading the police report, and seeing you in the courtroom. At that point, they are just reciting what's written on those documents.
- Go get 'em Tiger!
- do your research! Don't trust anybody. Never admit guilt!!! Always be respectful.
- It's easy to overlook or misunderstand many details regarding the laws and procedures relating to your case. This can make or break you.