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  • Cops should ticket everyone equally.

    Originally posted by Magnum50 View Post
    b. you disrespect or piss them off. (I put a circle with a dot on the back to remind me, when i get the sopeana, I pull the ticket...if there is a "*******' symbol, i go...if not thats my day off I'm staying home and gaming, lol.)
    That's disconcerting to say the least. I may be an idealist but I'd like to think application of law and punishment for violations of said law is uniform and objective. Nothing personal towards you Magnum, its clear you aren't alone in your approach.
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  • #2
    Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

    Originally posted by Grunt 70 View Post
    That's disconcerting to say the least. I may be an idealist but I'd like to think application of law and punishment for violations of said law is uniform and objective. Nothing personal towards you Magnum, its clear you aren't alone in your approach.
    I don't think anything that Magnum suggested is not objective in terms of justice. He didn't say that he pulls people over for their attitude, or anything else. The people that he's dealing with have already broken the law. Whether or not he puts any extra effort into being a witness for the government should not be at his own discretion?

    This is getting kinda Sandboxish...

    Anyway, to the OP, I'm sure that a ticket lawyer can get your ticket reduced to a lesser violation. I'm not sure if traffic violations are criminal offenses in your state, but I've found that showing up in court with a little bit of preparation will go a long way towards convincing the judge or jury that you believe that you're innocent. Take some pictures of the highway that you were traveling on from various points of view. One of from where the laser was, one from where you were when he said he got you, one of the area where you were actually pulled over. Illustrate the distance between the laser and where your vehicle was when he said he got you. Illustrate the distance between the laser and where the other officer got behind you. You want to put reasonable doubt into this case. Be polite and don't lose your cool if the officer uses polite words to say that you're an idiot and that you're wrong. The officer will show up. That's what traffic cops do.

    I say man up, pay the fine for speeding and be done with it. Don't tie up the courts just because you got caught and this time it actually means something to you.
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    • #3
      Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

      Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
      I don't think anything that Magnum suggested is not objective in terms of justice. He didn't say that he pulls people over for their attitude, or anything else. The people that he's dealing with have already broken the law. Whether or not he puts any extra effort into being a witness for the government should not be at his own discretion?

      This is getting kinda Sandboxish...

      Your post implies that appearing as a witness for the government is "extra" work. Of course I'm not a member of the law enforcement community but isn't appearing as a witness when the government prosecutes a case you are on part of your original job description. I'm not asking this to be skeptical, I just don't know. I mean...you wouldn't have that option in a felony case, would you.

      I think objective action would be attending all court dates regardless of circumstance. Picking and choosing which cases to attend based on how the perpetrator acted and spoke seems anything but objective.

      You are right though...this is a point for the Sandbox and I didn't mean to derail the OP, and I'm splitting hairs. Lets agree to disagree on this one instead of carrying on...or move my post to the SB...I'm good either way.
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      • #4
        Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

        Originally posted by ScratchMonkey View Post
        I see the automated speed-measuring rubber hoses on the road and had heard that the road guys measure average speeds and derate by some amount (5%?) to come up with the speed limit. If everyone drives the limit, that's gotta make the speed limit ratchet down over time, right? So we get penalized by slower speed limits because we stayed below the limit.
        Those rubber hoses only measure the amount of traffic on a road.

        Originally posted by Grunt 70 View Post
        Your post implies that appearing as a witness for the government is "extra" work. Of course I'm not a member of the law enforcement community but isn't appearing as a witness when the government prosecutes a case you are on part of your original job description. I'm not asking this to be skeptical, I just don't know. I mean...you wouldn't have that option in a felony case, would you.
        Your boss would probably change your schedule or authorize overtime pay on a felony case. This isn't always the case for traffic tickets. Before accusing people of being unjust, try to consider the entire situation from ALL points of view. I don't think anyone enjoys working for free or even getting called in to work on their day off...
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        • #5
          Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

          Split from: http://www.tacticalgamer.com/general...-man-cops.html
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          • #6
            Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

            Originally posted by Grunt 70 View Post
            Your post implies that appearing as a witness for the government is "extra" work. Of course I'm not a member of the law enforcement community but isn't appearing as a witness when the government prosecutes a case you are on part of your original job description. I'm not asking this to be skeptical, I just don't know. I mean...you wouldn't have that option in a felony case, would you.

            I think objective action would be attending all court dates regardless of circumstance. Picking and choosing which cases to attend based on how the perpetrator acted and spoke seems anything but objective.

            You are right though...this is a point for the Sandbox and I didn't mean to derail the OP, and I'm splitting hairs. Lets agree to disagree on this one instead of carrying on...or move my post to the SB...I'm good either way.
            I don't work traffic division, so I don't write a lot of tickets. However, on a slow night I'll definitely pull cars over for stupid driving. If they are extremely rude and disrespectful, they get cited. If they are apologetic and nice, I give them a warning.

            It's not me not treating people equally, it's called using discretion and "cutting people a break". People make mistakes and will fare much better when they say "you know what, I'm sorry. I screwed up" vs. "Don't you have anything better to do?!?!"

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            • #7
              Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

              Ya Grunt... I was going to respond in the other post about this, but didn't want to continue it's off-topic direction...

              I'm sorry Grunt, didn't know you wanted the truth and justice answer, I thought...maybe... you would want the truth... since we're all friends here, kinda...at least virtual friends.

              Everyone admitted in the other post that cops are human and sometimes wrong... of course you say that to support your argument against the cops giving you a ticket.... but won't admit that if it favors you.

              I'm not going to try and convince anyone of anything, most people are too closed minded on the subject anyway...and will take any opportunity to bash cops, even in a gaming forum. But will give you some examples, and you decide...

              Sure, we as cops should be robots with no emotions, but most of you should be glad we do have emotions and think for ourselfs...anyone who has ever gotten a warning from a cop, or known they were doing something wrong, but then saw a cop and he/she didn't do anything for whatever reason. She be thankfully we have up and down days, and/or think and emote in our lifes... because yes you are correct...every cop should stop any and all crimes and traffic infractions, and do what they are trained to do, either make the arrest, or write the ticket...no and's, if's, or but's...

              1. If I stop a teenage driver for speeding and he says "Sorry sir, didn't realize I was going that fast", "or "Sir is there anyway I can get a warning, I'll get in big trouble with my dad, if I get a ticket"... then I will write a warning. (I have kids, I drove that way as a kid also... my emotions kick in to be cool.)

              If that same teenager is stopped, and he says "No I wasn't your wrong, your a liar" or whatever... or "Your just harassing me because I'm a skateboarder"... then that kid will get a ticket... he (and most likely) his parents have no respect for the law or the laws of a state.

              2. If a rich dude in a Mercedes Benz is stopped for running a red light and I approach and as for his license and registration and he surrendered the documents without word or argument, and/or maybe apologizes, (but doesn't have to admit or apologize) then I will most likely give a warning... no if he says, "I know your chief", or "I'll have your job for this" (and BTW this stuff happens ALOT)...then I will think... bring it on Hero, and write the ticket.

              again, no respect for the law or the laws of this state.

              3. I see a car coming into the city at a high rate of speed, in and out of traffic... I stop the vehicle, it's a female crying... she states that her dad had a heart attack and sees going to the hospital... BY LAW I should say, "so, no excuse, heres your citations"... BUT I left my emotions in and say, "OK, slow down, you'll get there... your free to go"... (and then I usually follow the car to see if they go to the hospital)...

              so there is just a few samples... you decide...would you prefer a cop that goes by the book, does everything he is suppose to, a robot with no emotion... or would you prefer to be stopped by the cop that thinks,and uses his brain, and will allow emotions to influence the decision?


              and to add:

              Yes, I know not all cops are good cops or fair, or just... I know some will write a ticket to anyone and everyone, I know some will even stop a car without a valid reason and sometimes even make something up... but that is a rareity... most cops that work like that don't last long... the best thing as a citizen you could do is if a cop is really wrong, make a complaint... sure 1, 2, or 3 complaints won't do much...but if a cop is really doing the wrong thing...those complaints add up and eventually cops get fired... (I see it all the time, not everyone is cut out to be a cop...no matter how easy YOU think the job is.)

              Realize.. traffic cops are the most hated cops... they do what they do...they write tickets, rarely any breaks... but most street cops, and/or K9 cops (like myself) are looking for a crime arrest... the only way to make crime arrest, besides catching someone in the act is to do traffic stops, ask questions, get nosy, and see what you dig up... sure honest citizens probably don't like the accusation tone of the cop, but the cop just wants to see how you react when asked... "you got a gun in that car? weapons, drugs?"... It's nothing personal, and nothing because of the color of your skin, or what you drive... we ask the same questions to anyone we stop, including old people... because we have a video camera running, and we have to be fair... we have to show that we also ask old people those questions, whites, blacks, hispanics...anyone and everyone...

              In law enforcement today, most of us have video camera systems, and mics hooked up to us and our cars... just realize that folks... and ours records what happened up to 2 minutes before the stop... so if you run a red light or speed (the radar is hooked to the video to record your speed, patrol speed etc etc) it's on the tape... nothing more fun then to have someone come in, make a complaint against me for illegally stopping them... then me pulling out the tape with the infraction right there... thank god for video in todays law enforcement actions... 20 plus years... about 15 complaints, 13 of them had video that cleared me clear as day... no video on the other 2 complaints, but unfounded.
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              • #8
                Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

                (slightly off topic reply here...)

                On the rare occassions I've been stopped for whatever reason, I've always been respectful and courteous. That's just being a civil human being, and I know they're just doing their job. But is it really our place to have to apologize to the traffic officer for breaking a law? Every time I see that or hear a story about that I just wonder...why the hell are they apologizing? Yes you did something wrong by speeding, but it wasn't personally directed at the officer who happened to be sitting there.

                Sorry, that's just a pet peeve of mine - I've gotten more warnings than tickets, and even when I got a ticket I disagreed with (e.g. a citation for not wearing a safety belt...that law still boils my blood), I was nonetheless affable and nice with the officer. But no way I'm going to apologize, whether it's an honest apology or trying to weasel my way out of a ticket. It just seems like a non sequitur to me.

                That being said, and getting back on topic, I'm personally glad officers (not just trafffic officers) have personal discretion. Sure I feel like I could've gotten more discretion at different times, but in general even traffic officers are plenty reasonable in my experience.
                Beatnik

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                • #9
                  Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

                  Originally posted by Beatnik View Post
                  (slightly off topic reply here...)

                  On the rare occassions I've been stopped for whatever reason, I've always been respectful and courteous. That's just being a civil human being, and I know they're just doing their job. But is it really our place to have to apologize to the traffic officer for breaking a law? Every time I see that or hear a story about that I just wonder...why the hell are they apologizing? Yes you did something wrong by speeding, but it wasn't personally directed at the officer who happened to be sitting there.

                  Sorry, that's just a pet peeve of mine - I've gotten more warnings than tickets, and even when I got a ticket I disagreed with (e.g. a citation for not wearing a safety belt...that law still boils my blood), I was nonetheless affable and nice with the officer. But no way I'm going to apologize, whether it's an honest apology or trying to weasel my way out of a ticket. It just seems like a non sequitur to me.

                  You're not apologizing to the officer so to speak, you're apologizing for breaking the law ;)


                  ...but in general even traffic officers are plenty reasonable in my experience.
                  HAHAHAHAHA, not where I live :D

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                  • #10
                    Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

                    Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
                    Those rubber hoses only measure the amount of traffic on a road.

                    Before accusing people of being unjust, try to consider the entire situation from ALL points of view. I don't think anyone enjoys working for free or even getting called in to work on their day off...
                    I never said Magnum was being unjust or at least that's not what I meant to imply. There's nothing unjust about ticketing someone who's broken the law. My response was all about subjective vs. objective application of an officer's role in effecting punishment...I see them as two different things.

                    I read Magnum's long response and it's a good one. I don't think we should eliminate personal discretion from an officer's daily routine. Everyone is human. My point is this...if you wrote the ticket, after you've used discretion, why not show up in court. What's the point of writing the ticket if you don't want them punished. It just seems rather arbitrary and that's the source of my kneejerk reaction.

                    Based on Cing's response is it safe to assume officer's don't get paid for appearing in court to help in the prosecution of traffic scofflaws? That's just wrong. If you are performing your duty in court you ought to be paid for your time.

                    PS...I went through a red light the other morning on the way to work...big intersection, light had just turned as I approached the stop line, plenty of time to make it through safely. Looked over to my left and the first car in line was an officer. Lights go on, I pull over and first words out of my mouth were " I'm sorry I went through the red light-I'm late for work". "No problem" officer says, "It happens"...comes back a few minutes later with a warning and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't grateful.

                    When I was alot younger and stupider I drove for 3 years with no license. My license from Florida had expired and I never went through the process of acquiring a new one in Massachusetts. I had insurance but was unlicensed. Finally one day I got busted--pulled over, car impounded. Could've been arrested but wasn't. Don't know what I was thinking but I went to court to fight it instead of paying the fines. Officer didn't show and when it was my time I told the judge I had been licensed in Florida but never transferred it to Massachusetts. Can you imagine my shock when the citations were dismissed because the officer didn't show? Hey--I tell these stories just to let you know I'm not trying to put myself above anyone else.
                    Last edited by Grunt 70; 08-16-2007, 11:15 PM.
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                    • #11
                      Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

                      I think that encouraging respectful and courteous behavior in dealing with law enforcement is a decent goal. If the rude and stupid pay more traffic tickets than the pleasant and savvy, well...that sort of models the rest of society doesn't it? Personally, I would like to say to Magnum and any other LEOs I think you're doing a fantastic job and bravo! And if we ever meet on the side of a road, remember that I said that! :D

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                      • #12
                        Re: Cops should ticket everyone equally.

                        In my area we have some good ones and some bad ones. On the highway we have a few that like to bait people and it drives me mad. I have seen police ride other cars bumpers that are going the legal speed limit. I have seen them cut people off when in normal traffic, and just generally being a "bully" on the road.

                        Now where I came from before here, that was not the case. I knew a lot of officers (most of which were great people) and never saw this kind of behavior. For some reason here, that is the attitude and it makes me angry to be honest. I think the next time I see something like that I will take your advice and report it. Traffic is bad enough as it is without having a "bully" on the road.
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                        • #13
                          Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

                          Originally posted by Grunt 70 View Post
                          I read Magnum's long response and it's a good one. I don't think we should eliminate personal discretion from an officer's daily routine. Everyone is human. My point is this...if you wrote the ticket, after you've used discretion, why not show up in court. What's the point of writing the ticket if you don't want them punished. It just seems rather arbitrary and that's the source of my kneejerk reaction.

                          Based on Cing's response is it safe to assume officer's don't get paid for appearing in court to help in the prosecution of traffic scofflaws? That's just wrong. If you are performing your duty in court you ought to be paid for your time.
                          I'm sure it's different everywhere, but I'm pretty sure that most officers are paid when they have to go to court. But my point was that you weren't looking at the big picture from the officer's perspective. If it's optional, would you want to come to court on your weekend (which happens to be Tuesday and Wednesday, which is bad enough...) just to testify for a speeding ticket? What if you're on duty and you've got 6 calls stacked up, waiting for your response? What if two of those calls involved armed individuals threatening someone? What if the court date is on the same day that you're supposed to qualify with your pistol, and if you don't qualify, you don't get to carry a gun? What if the court appearance coincides with the funeral of an officer from three counties over?

                          There are plenty of other things that are more important to an officer than testifying in court that somebody is speeding. Can we agree on that?

                          If so, then I think your disagreement is with the fact that some officers prioritize their court appearances based on the attitude of the person charged with the crime, instead of based on the things that might be keeping them from court? I'm curious as to why you don't think officer discretion applies as equally to this decision, as to the decision of whether to cite in the first place...
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                          • #14
                            Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

                            Originally posted by CingularDuality View Post
                            If it's optional, would you want to come to court on your weekend (which happens to be Tuesday and Wednesday, which is bad enough...) just to testify for a speeding ticket?
                            That sounds like an administrative screw-up. (Nah, that never happens with government.) Why shouldn't the court consider the accuser's schedule when setting the date? With all that space on the paperwork, surely there could be checkboxes indicating when the officer is available?

                            What if you're on duty and you've got 6 calls stacked up, waiting for your response? What if two of those calls involved armed individuals threatening someone?
                            If the date is set in advance, wouldn't you know that and schedule for it? As a juror, I get one free deferral in one jurisdiction, and in all the others I'm liable to get sucked into, I have to show up or else. And my boss is required to give me the time off for it. Shouldn't officer appearance work the same way?

                            What if the court date is on the same day that you're supposed to qualify with your pistol, and if you don't qualify, you don't get to carry a gun? What if the court appearance coincides with the funeral of an officer from three counties over?
                            Even with jury duty, I'd think the court would be understanding about that kind of emergency. But that's not something that happens every day.

                            There are plenty of other things that are more important to an officer than testifying in court that somebody is speeding. Can we agree on that?
                            There are things I'd rather be doing than jury duty, esp. the long boring part when I'm waiting to see if I'm even going to be on a panel. But I don't get to blow it off.
                            Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

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                            • #15
                              Re: Help an innocent man! Cops?

                              Originally posted by ScratchMonkey View Post
                              That sounds like an administrative screw-up. (Nah, that never happens with government.) Why shouldn't the court consider the accuser's schedule when setting the date? With all that space on the paperwork, surely there could be checkboxes indicating when the officer is available?
                              Perhaps it's not the case in small towns, but there's no practical way to do this in a city. It's just not that organized, nor do I think it will become so anytime soon.

                              If the date is set in advance, wouldn't you know that and schedule for it? As a juror, I get one free deferral in one jurisdiction, and in all the others I'm liable to get sucked into, I have to show up or else. And my boss is required to give me the time off for it. Shouldn't officer appearance work the same way?
                              An officer might have to sit there for 5 hours to wait until the case comes up that HE needs to testify in... There are 73 cases that need to be heard that day, each ticket was written by a different officer. Do you want 20% of your police force waiting in court to testify on traffic tickets?

                              Our police departments are undermanned all across the country. Most people pay a fine to avoid going to court for traffic violations. If everyone started contesting their tickets, police departments would be forced to not allow their officers to waste time in traffic court.

                              Seriously, try to look at the big picture from a different perspective. There's a reason (dozens of different reasons, actually...) why officers often don't show up for traffic court, and it's not because they're lazy or don't care...
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