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Police Stop Stories

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A recent post by a TX dancer about a DUI/DWI stop after her shift prompted me to post this blog about some personal true stories, including one that I've pm'ed to others.

I am not a lawyer or crusader. My "brushes" with the law have not resulted in excessive points or suspensions. Yes, I've "bitten the bullet" by mailing in the fine, yet other times I've been let off with a warning.

Some common sense guidelines that just might make the difference between a warning, and a ticket:

1). No matter how PO'ed, or how much of a hurry you're in, accept the fact that you have now been nailed, and are paying "the cost of speeding/hurrying". You will see the wisdom of adopting this mindset in final paragraph.

2). The police officer is in command. Arguing, or trying to "hurry along" the situation can only make things worse. Comply with the requests, providing what he/she asks for when they ask. Nothing more, nothing less. Do so in a slow, deliberate manner (Re- #1 above). If they ask for license first, followed by registration, produce them in that order, telegraphing your moves- eg- "My registration is in glove compartment , behind visor, wherever."

Doing the above probably won't prevent a ticket if you were doing triple digit speeds down the interstate, or running a red light, but anything to convince officer that you're not a knucklehead could make the difference between a warning, and a ticket.

Some true stories: 1A & 1B: In 1st case, I was going slightly fast when I was pulled over in a rental car. Turns out he wanted to stop me for an expired state inspection sticker on rental car. As I was starting out on a 2 hour drive in car, returning short distance to rental agency, and exchanging for a car with a current sticker saved me from multiple potential hassles later on.
In second case, (night) in my sports car, I "nailed it" pulling away from a stoplight. Whereupon, I saw some flashing lights behind me. Oh, s^#t, here we go again
Turns out he's stopping me for no front plates, not speeding. Although state has front plate law, many owners of particular brand elect not to put front plates on, and is winked at sometimes. In my case, I don't mind front plates. I do mind the ineffective glue on version of late (vs screw on), after falling off multiple times, I said "to hell with it". I didn't say that to this cop. I kept framed front plates behind passenger seat. I said, "if you'll shine your flashlight behind right seat, you'll see front plate that has fallen off a few times". He was OK with that, and ended up asking me a few questions about my cars features. (Cops can be car guys, too).

Case #2- Everyone probably has a tale about cops setting up sobriety checkpoints just outside clubs. This different twist involves Baby Dolls- Medway, OH. It is customary practically nationwide that it is OK to make a right turn on a red light, unless a sign specifically prohibits it. (I've heard that NYC is one exception, no right turns on red there). About a mile from club, the last red light with a right turn to interstate has such a prohibition on "right turn on red". I "overlooked" this a few times. One particular night, I saw a cop pull out from a hidden parking spot, and pull over a red light turner ahead of me. I was more careful on subseqent visits.

Case 3- "Double Jeopardy": OK, I've already mentioned some cases when I was speeding a little, but cop was stopping me for something else. In this case, at least one of bordering states finest was very determined to nail me for two speeding tickets. After customary handing over of license, registration, and 5 minute time interval to fill out ticket, a second police cruiser that I was unaware of pulled away. After 5 more minutes had passed without officer returning to my car, I was considering getting out, and asking officer if there was anything wrong, but thought the better of it, and stayed put. A few minutes later, officer finally returns, handing back my credentials, plus citation with mail-in fine option. After signing form, I am free to go.

But, not so fast- the 2nd , and inordinate time delay smells fishy to me. To "cure" my lead foot, I set cruise control on 64 mph. Sure enough, 5 miles further along, I spot a blacked out police cruiser parked in a center median turnaround. A short time later, I see a pair of headlights rapidly pass the truck a few hundred yards back, and then slowly fall in line behind me. He then proceeded to "jazz" his throttle a few times to goad me into speeding. I wasn't taking the bait. He eventually grew tired of the silly game, and passed me.

The state line was still several miles ahead, I just left cruise control on, not taking any chances. Which was a good thing, because this cop was not through with me yet. About 2/3 of a mile prior to reaching state line,(~ 30-40 seconds) I noticed a pair of headlights shining from the center median into the opposite lane, followed by a police cruiser headed in the opposite direction.

Seeing that it was ~ 30 miles from police stop to state line, and a travel time difference of ~ 26 seconds between my speed (64), and the speed limit (65), I am convinced that "Bordering States Finest" timed me the entire distance, and were very eager to nail me for a double speeding ticket. (Anybody know the penalty for getting 2 speeding tickets in 1 night ??

I've used up enough bandwidth already, wishing everyone happy, and safe journeys to and from clubs.

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Updated 12-05-2009 at 05:08 PM by minnow (Title Change)