Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Town cuts traffic tickets 84%

Fewer tickets, less accidents

A Northern California city reduced issuing traffic tickets by 84%--and accidents fell 7%.

Rather than concentrating on issuing tickets, the police chief wants his officers to focus on long term solutions. If collisions are an issue at this location, what can we do about that? A median? A signal? Solving problems, he argues, is more important than writing tickets.

A not so good excuse

Another excuse that didn't work. A teenager tried to convince the officer she was pregnant and needed to get to the hospital right now. After she was arrested for obstruction of justice, the baby turned out to be a wool sweater.

A doctor told a motorcycle cop of my acquaintance pretty much the same thing. He was speeding because he was needed at the hospital for an urgent operation. "Go! Go!" the cop urged him. The motorcycle followed the doctor. They were in the hospital elevator before the doc gave it up. The officer walked back outside with him and wrote the citation.

Double jeopardy?

Interesting question on Yahoo Answers. He gets a ticket for tinted windshield and pays it. Does the double jeopardy clause of the US Constitution protect him from getting such a ticket again?

No--the next ticket would be for a separate offense. (The clause protects against being prosecuted twice for the same crime ("fact pattern")--not for breaking the same law twice.) But it's good that somebody's reading the Constitution and thinking about it.


The officer was about to write a simple traffic ticket when the 14 years old passenger piped up the driver had raped her. Things got a little more complicated after that.

Houston has reportedly joined Los Angeles in kicking out red light ticket cameras.


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