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Old 04-16-2008, 02:13 AM   #1
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Default Who knows anything about the law?

I've been posting on some law help sites and whatnot, but I thought that I may as well post here because A. as some people may be able to give advice, and B. I'll get some more amusing answers here. And now my generic post.

I am a minor in California, and I got a ticket for what the cop called racing on a local canyon road back in February. I am at a loss as to what to do as so many people have been telling me so many different things.

First of all, I want to say not guilty, because it was in no way a race. I was on the road following my friend up to the point at which the cop was watching. We were admitably speeding, although the cop did not use radar and didn't say how fast I was going. We were not overtaking each other, we were not driving on the other side of the road, we were not tailgating each other, we had no intent of overtaking each other, and knew perfectly well who was going to get to the top first, we were just driving up fast in our lane. I am not sure how much of an argument I will have in juvenile court because from what I have heard the judge really doesn't listen to you without a lawyer.

I do not have a lawyer, although I tried to get one. My parents feel that a lawyer isn't needed, and do not want to pay the money for one due to our financial situation.

Here is more of the dilemma, my parents are saying that I should just plead guilty to try and make the court see how cooperative I am being, and to not stir up more trouble, but at the same time, I honestly wasn't racing, and want to argue my case.

And yet another thing I heard about doing was transferring the case to a different court where they have a history of being more lenient, but again, I have no clue on how to do this.

Any help would be much appreciated for my fast approaching court date.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:24 AM   #2
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If you were not racing, then plead not guilty. Tell the judge your story. Sounds like reckless driving to me. I've been in court several times over stuff like this. I happen to know a lawyer, so I consulted him a few times, but never had him in court to represent me. You may want to talk to one, and get their advice.

For example, I got arrested for illegal equipment, having nitrous in my caravan. Well, I thought it wasn't illegal, but couldn't find anything that said it wasn't. So, I talk to my lawyer and he shows me all the laws and statutes and after a few minutes of research, we find 'illegal equipment' and print those pages. He reads through it, and there is no mention of nitrous. Brought the papers to court and plead not guilty. Judge looked at me and said are you saying you didn't have nitrous? I'm looking at the pictures the officer took. I said no sir, but nitrous is not illegal equipment. My lawyer and I can not find a law or statute that say's it is. They search for an hour and then call me back up and said it's not illegal, and tore it up.

Moral is, even though I thought/knew it wasn't illegal, I didn't really know how to say it in court. Consulting my lawyer he gave me the advise I needed to win my case.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:29 AM   #3
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Well damn, now I just need to make friends with a lawyer... real quick.

Thanks for the advice though, there are plenty around here in Malibu, I'll see if I know someone who knows someone.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:37 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by patsmx5 View Post
If you were not racing, then plead not guilty. Tell the judge your story. Sounds like reckless driving to me. I've been in court several times over stuff like this. I happen to know a lawyer, so I consulted him a few times, but never had him in court to represent me. You may want to talk to one, and get their advice.

For example, I got arrested for illegal equipment, having nitrous in my caravan. Well, I thought it wasn't illegal, but couldn't find anything that said it wasn't. So, I talk to my lawyer and he shows me all the laws and statutes and after a few minutes of research, we find 'illegal equipment' and print those pages. He reads through it, and there is no mention of nitrous. Brought the papers to court and plead not guilty. Judge looked at me and said are you saying you didn't have nitrous? I'm looking at the pictures the officer took. I said no sir, but nitrous is not illegal equipment. My lawyer and I can not find a law or statute that say's it is. They search for an hour and then call me back up and said it's not illegal, and tore it up.

Moral is, even though I thought/knew it wasn't illegal, I didn't really know how to say it in court. Consulting my lawyer he gave me the advise I needed to win my case.
What! A cop actually gave you a ticket for having nitrous? I totally believe it, but I wouldn't think that there are any laws specifically naming nitrous.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:41 AM   #5
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What! A cop actually gave you a ticket for having nitrous? I totally believe it, but I wouldn't think that there are any laws specifically naming nitrous.
It is illegal in some states. You can't have the bottle hooked up. It has to be off and disconnected. In other states bottle has to be out of the car completely on the streets. It's only like 6-10 states though, and not MS.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:49 AM   #6
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Have you talked to the DA yet have you?

Spray is illegal on the road in all states IIRC.
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:04 AM   #7
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From what I can tell, no DA because it's a juvenile case, just me and a judge. But I have heard conflicting information about this, but when my parents called the court they said there was no DA, so I am going to assume they were correct.
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:42 AM   #8
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Sounds like a lame situation man, shoulda ******* booked it when you passed that cop. jk
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:47 AM   #9
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Whatever you do, DO NOT PLEAD GUILTY.

What CVC did he write you up for? Have you received your "Courtesy Notice" in the mail yet? What road was it on? How fast were you going? What is the posted speed limit? What were the traffic conditions? What was the weather like?
PM me these answers if you don't want to be posting them all here, I'm 19 years old and have be given over 10 tickets but have no points on my record. :-D I can try to help but no guarantees.
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Old 04-16-2008, 10:14 AM   #10
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if you stab someone in broad daylight, 50 people see you and the person you stabbed is the judge that's assigned to his own trial and happened to video record it at the same time....you say not guilty.

but alas, it's CA, so time to start pulling the parts off the car that you wanna resell
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Old 04-16-2008, 10:24 AM   #11
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I thought they impound and crush your car if your caught "street racing" in Cali.
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Old 04-16-2008, 10:47 AM   #12
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I thought they impound and crush your car if your caught "street racing" in Cali.
Only if it has stolen parts.
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Old 04-16-2008, 01:34 PM   #13
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CA sux big hairy donky ***** and dick
go to court, tell the cop "**** you" tell the judge "**** you" and then say for the record "**** you"...
they have no proof of you speeding, you are not guilty, how can he say you racing if you were behind another car not trying to pass it, no proof...DO NOT PLEAD GUILTY or ill stab you in the face with an Ice pick
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Old 04-16-2008, 01:51 PM   #14
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Even if your parents won't financially support your decision to retain council, would they permit you to consult with a public defender?

Also, here's a handy reference so you can start doing your homework:
http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/calaw.html


From CA Vehicle code, chaper 12, article 1:
Quote:
23109. (a) A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle speed contest on a highway. As used in this section, a motor vehicle speed contest includes a motor vehicle race against another vehicle, a clock, or other timing device. For purposes of this section, an event in which the time to cover a prescribed route of more than 20 miles is measured, but where the vehicle does not exceed the speed limits, is not a speed contest.
(b) A person shall not aid or abet in any motor vehicle speed contest on any highway.
(c) A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle exhibition of speed on a highway, and a person shall not aid or abet in a motor
vehicle exhibition of speed on any highway.
Unfortunately, exhibition of speed is not clearly defined. It is entirely subject to the opinion of the arresting officer and the judgment of the court.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:22 PM   #15
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Would the fact that "racing/competition of speed" is specified on the ticket matter? Or does the 23109 mean that any part of the 23109 can be applying to me, including the speed exhibition part?

And I don't know anything about the public defender thing, but in juvenile court the rights are different, and I don't think you have right to a public attorney, but I'll look into it.
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Old 04-16-2008, 02:43 PM   #16
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I would still plead NOT GUILTY. Remember, in court, you DO NOT have to prove your innocence...they have to prove you're guilty. Did you admit to speeding to the cop? Since it seems the cop cannot prove the speeds of either car, he has no proof of racing, he has nothing to show for it in court. Is your 1st court date a trial or arraignment? If it's an arraignment date, then when you plead not guilty a trial date will be set and you should be able to get a public defender via the court. Remember, public defenders DO want to win their case..even though they are court appointed, they will fight for you.

BTW ... **** CA.
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:01 PM   #17
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I would still plead NOT GUILTY. Remember, in court, you DO NOT have to prove your innocence...they have to prove you're guilty. Did you admit to speeding to the cop? Since it seems the cop cannot prove the speeds of either car, he has no proof of racing, he has nothing to show for it in court. Is your 1st court date a trial or arraignment? If it's an arraignment date, then when you plead not guilty a trial date will be set and you should be able to get a public defender via the court. Remember, public defenders DO want to win their case..even though they are court appointed, they will fight for you.

BTW ... **** CA.
I have never ever ever heard of a traffic court in North America where this is true.

Always GUILTY and you have to prove your innocence. Yes, it is bassackwards, but that is my experience and the majority experience of what I have read.

Even with examples of an officer's perjury on the stand, the accused was still found guilty in some cases.
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:04 PM   #18
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i met a lawyer who drives '99 miata w/ all the goodies on it... ill try to find his phone number for you.
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Old 04-16-2008, 03:53 PM   #19
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I have never ever ever heard of a traffic court in North America where this is true.

Always GUILTY and you have to prove your innocence. Yes, it is bassackwards, but that is my experience and the majority experience of what I have read.

Even with examples of an officer's perjury on the stand, the accused was still found guilty in some cases.
And i speak from first hand experience I took off out of my neighborhood one night and punched my way through 1st,2nd and 3rd. A cop saw/heard me do this and gave me a ticket for "Racing- exhibition of speed". I kept my mouth shut while the cop gave me my ticket. When i went to TRIAL (i plead not guilty at my arraignment), i got to drill the cop with questions. I basically showed the court that he had no evidence that i did what i was accused of by asking him various questions about how he judged my acceleration. I was found not guilty.... and i too, was by myself with no attorney.
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Old 04-16-2008, 04:08 PM   #20
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Accept responsibility for what you did. If you truely beleive you weren't in the wrong, then fight it. If you are fighting it just to avoid the penalty then you need to think of that everytime you bitch because a cop wasn't there when you needed him.

I've done my fair share of stupidity behind the wheel of a car, and the times I got caught I took it like a man and paid. **** like that teaches you a lesson.

What's the fine and the impact on your insurance if you are found guilty?
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